Category Archives: Contest

PROTON Motorsports Fan Fare : My Monte Carlo Trip (Part 2)

So we all read about Zaki’s initial experience winning the Monte Carlo Rally Online Contest here. And now it’s time for the final installment. Read about Zaki’s experience in Monaco with the PROTON Motorsports team, at the world’s oldest rally – the Rallye of Monte Carlo held from 19th to 23rd January, 2011.

My Monte Carlo Trip

19th January 2011 – The first day of the rally finally arrived. We began the day with our hopes held high for the team to finish respectably. It was freezing cold that day, around 2 degrees celcius! Nevertheless we proceeded to SS1 after having breakfast and found a good spot to see the cars coming. The scenery was breathtaking along the way there. After an hour of waiting the first car passed by. A few more cars passed by and then it was our turn. The screaming yellow Proton Satria passed us at mindboggling speed, with PG behind the wheels and I just felt so proud. Then the bad news arrived. We discovered that Chris’ car was having an electrical problem and had retired from the race. We were disappointed but we still had PG to root for.

We headed to SS3 to cheer for PG. On our way there we got to know that PG had crashed and could not continue the race. We continued our journey to SS3 ; everybody was so down after the spate of bad news. I could not help but feel sorry for the team as they prepared well for the race and everything went down the drain after two stages. We didn’t have any appetite for lunch that day and instead just proceeded to the service park. When we arrived at the service park Chris was already there with the team investigating the cause of his retirement from the race; we found out that he suffered an electrical problem. After only driving for about 700 meters the car stopped. He certainly looked dejected as he was raring to go in the rally; nevertheless everybody in the team were encouraging and supporting him nevertheless. PG arrived soon after and we discovered that during the stage he had hit a rock at a curb and broke the suspension arm of the car. He could not drive the Neo anymore.. and he limped back to the checkpoint. I thought that super rally rules apply here but apparently it doesn’t apply for the Monte Carlo Rally, and so the team’s progress in the rally came to a halt. We then headed back to our hotel. We had a feast that night as the Nasi Kandar Kayu owner Mr Sirajudin cooked us curry with roti canai and we literally gulped the food that night. En. Sirajudin was also in Monaco to witness the rally with us.

20th January 2011 – Since the team had already packed up we decided to head to Monaco and drive around the scenic routes to get there. Ryan our driver took us to some really nice roads and beautiful scenery and we all wished that it would snow. We didn’t see any snow until we drove through the Napoleon route. We were all jumping with joy playing with snow and satisfied that our wish had come true. We almost didn’t make it to Monaco as it was snowing heavily causing slippery roads along the drive. Thankfully we made it through and arrived at our hotel that night. I took this opportunity to explore Monaco and do some sightseeing as well as enjoy dinner with the group.

21st January 2011 – We had our breakfast together then walked around Monaco to take pictures, then we visited the service park. Nik, me and several others from the group decided to trace the famous Formula 1 track of Monaco. Who would have thought after the first corner of the track the climb was quite steep, it didn’t look that way at all on tv! We headed to the service park and stayed there for a while until 2pm to head back to the hotel to join the group. We were going to SS10 to the famous spot: Col De Turini! I had been looking forward to this event.

It took about 3 hours to get there. When we arrived there the temperature was -5 degree celcius and we were all literally freezing cold. We walked to a particular corner and took our place. The atmosphere there was simply amazing. There were people playing musical instruments, people with flares, people chanting the names of their favourite drivers and many other things happening. Some brave guys even sprayed the road with the names of their favourite carmakers and one guy even brought a chainsaw but without the cutting blade just to make some noise! It was hilarious as some people were throwing big chunks of snow to the road. According to Ryan the snow would cause the roads to be more slippery, rendering the cars a little unstable so the people would have a chance to witness some sliding action! Amazingly the police just looked on and let it all happen right in front of their eyes. How sporting of them. I guess as long as there is no real trouble caused, they did not have to worry.

Night soon approached. I saw a light from a distance followed by the sound of an engine. The drivers had arrived! One by one I watched them pass me by as they twisted and turned around the corners challenged by the snow. The “Night of the Long Knives” lived up to its name. As they passed by I thought to myself how wonderful it would have been if our Proton had still remained in the competition. But this is rallying. Just about anything can happen.

Around 10pm the first event ended. The racers would return in the opposite direction but the group decided to head back to the service park. With that the rally reached its final stage at SS12. I wanted to go to the service park but I was just too tired and headed off to bed.

22nd January 2011 – Today the prize giving ceremony took place. Nik and I decided to head out early to walk around Monaco in the morning and attend the ceremony. We went to the Prince’s Palace to witness the event. Bryan Bouffier secured his maiden win in the Monte Carlo Rally and in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. Congratulations! The ceremony began at 11am and ended at 1pm. We then went to do some shopping and made our way back to hotel. Later that night we all went to dinner, took some memorable photos among ourselves and even managed to do some late night shopping!

23rd January 2011 – My final day in Monaco. We went for breakfast and stumbled across a flea market. They sell lots of things, ranging from fruits to clothes. We spent some time there and headed back to the hotel to pack our things. The it was off to the airport after bidding farewell to our drivers. Sad to leave France but happy to be heading to our homeland.

How do I sum up my entire experience? Well, the whole week was a journey and adventure that I will never forget in my entire life. The places, events and friends that I have encountered is priceless. To the rally team, keep up the good work. I know you guys have what it takes to succeed so don’t give up. To the committee members and the media crew, you guys rock! Thank you for this experience. Thank you for the hospitality. And finally, thank you PROTON for making my dream come true!

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PROTON Motorsports Fan Fare : My Monte Carlo Trip (Part 1)

Hello everyone! Remember our PROTON Motorsports fan who won the Rallye to Monte Carlo online game? The one we all envied for winning himself an all expense paid trip for two to watch the Rally in Monte Carlo. Yes, that’s our lucky guy, Mohd Akram Zaki. If you don’t you can read all about it here and here.

In this two part posting, you’ll be able to read about Zaki’s experience in Monaco with the PROTON Motorsports team, at the world’s oldest rally – the Rallye of Monte Carlo held from 19th to 23rd January, 2011.

Here’s the first installment of Zaki’s story. Enjoy!

My Monte Carlo Trip – by Mohd Akram Zaki

Fr left to right: Chris, Akram, Zaki and PG

10th of January 2011 – I received a call from PROTON’s Digital Marketing division, telling me that I won the Rallye to Monte-Carlo competition! I was in utter shock and had to calm myself down. From that moment on, my friends kept saying that my face was a reflection of excitement and happiness. It was indeed! I couldn’t sleep for an entire week just thinking about the rally that I was about to witness very soon. And in Monte Carlo! I was going to Monte Carlo!!

It all truly sunk in when I went to the PROTON Centre of Excellence for  a briefing before the trip.I met the PROTON Motorsports team and after a short briefing headed home full of anticipation of the coming week.

17th January 2011 – The day was finally here. I headed to KLIA with my friend,  Nik Mohd Azhar whom I chose to accompany me to Monaco. The whole flight took about 18 hours including a 4 hour transit in Dubai. We arrived at Cote D’azure airport in Nice, France at 1pm. We joined the group; that now included  members of the media as well. We met our drivers for the whole week, Ryan, Nick and Justin. Off we headed to our hotel in Valence, located about 400km from Nice. It took about 4 hours to get there. After dinner, we headed to our rooms to retire for the night and get some much needed rest.

18th January 2011 – We were taken to  a go-kart track somewhere between the town of Valence and our hotel to watch the rally cars at shakedown. I had no idea of the next surprise that was in store for Nik and me. The entire PROTON rally team were there when we arrived. I met Chris Mellors, team principal. He works together with Zuber Ismail, who manages the  teams affairs. I also met Chris Atkinson and Per-Gunnar Anderson, both of them well respected rally drivers, with Chris who used to drive for Subaru and PG winning JWRC titles previously. As I was taking pictures with them and the cars, one of the mechanics told me to get inside the car as I would soon be taken on  a taxi ride with PG behind the wheels. I was overjoyed with excitement and grateful at the same time as my wish had finally come true: to experience being in  the PROTON rally car. I had been wishing for it since the day found out I had won the competition.

It doesn’t get any better than this. Inside a fully prepared rally car, complete with roll cage etc, with one of the best rally drivers in the world. I just sat in the co-driver seat and took in all the sensations that I was experiencing. The acceleration, the cornering force, the sound of the car, the blurry vision, everything that I could absorb.. PG is a wonderful driver. He can drive the car at an incredible speed on a small track. The Neo performed amazingly and I loved it. I will remember this experience  for the rest of my life! Nik’s turn came next and I was positive he felt the same as I did. After the session the team headed back to the service park and we participated in a few rounds of kart racing. It was certainly a fun and enjoyable experience, driving in the cold winter even though my joints ached a little afterwards, but it was worth it!

Then we went to the service park where we joined the rest of the team at the team camp and I was greeted with the sight of the cars being maintained and it was interesting to see the team mechanics at their job checking to see if there were any defects on the car. I tried my best not to bother them but at the same time tried to get as close as possible to observe what they were doing. After lunch I explored the service park and got to see all the teams preparing their cars for the rally. It was very delightful to see lots of rally fans coming to see their favourite cars and teams. THe fans really took interest in our PROTON car as we are the only team using the bright yellow PROTON Satria Neo. Without a doubt the Neo was the most beautiful car there. I helped the team give out freebies to the visitors and introduce them to PROTON.

We stayed on till late evening to attend the official IRC drivers introduction event and applause our drivers and the team. Then we headed back to our hotel in the outskirts of Valence to have dinner and call it a day….we were so excited that day 1 of the rally would begin tomorrow….

Stay tuned for more of Zaki’s adventures in Monte Carlo…when Part 2 of his story is published next week.

“Spot The Difference” online contest – we’ve picked the winners!

Hey guys, so you’ve spotted the differences and you’ve proven that indeed you are our true fans, besides having fabulous eyesight of course 🙂

The time has come….*drum roll* and the winners are……

Day 1 Winners

1. Dextrous
2. Eric Chen
3. Eric Ong
4. Nutzeywagon
5. Steve Robinson

Day 2 Winners

1. Nazim Idris
2. Richard BL Ong
3. Ron Imza
4. Muserella
5. Misako

Day 3 Winners

1. Phil
2. Speed
3. Khayrul Shahril
4. David
5. Ivan Ng

CONGRATULATIONS to all our winners! You’ve won an exclusive autographed poster and merchandise. You’ll be hearing from us soon on the collection of your prizes via the email addresses provided.

Have a lovely evening!

“Spot the Difference” Online Contest

Happy Thursday, everyone! We’ve got an easy peasy contest lined up for our fans over here at the PROTON Motorsports blog. Titled “Spot The Difference” online contest, all you have to do is spot the differences in the images provided below and answer two easy questions.

The first five (5) readers with a sharp eye who are able to spot the differences between the two PROTON Satria Neo S2000 Rally car images will stand a chance to win exclusive autographed items by the PROTON Satria Neo S2000 R3 Malaysia Rally Team drivers themselves. Everyday for the next three days, the first five (5) readers will be able to participate in this contest and win those prizes. Cool, eh.

So what do you need to do exactly?

Answer this question:

1. What is the name of the first driver of the PROTON R3 MALAYSIA RALLY TEAM?

* He has been involved in motorsports for the past 16 years, participating in more than 80 WRC events which is not surprising as he comes from a family of rally drivers, father Jimmy and late brother World Rally Champion Colin.

a) Stephane Prevot

b) Bill Hayes

c) Alister McRae

d) Chris Atkinson

Then spot the differences between the two images below and answer the question that follows:

Spot the objects that do not belong on the PROTON S2000 Rally Car:

a) The PROTON logo shield

b) The thunder bolt

c) The R3 logo

d) The star

So how do you submit your entries? Just post your answers in the comments box below.  Don’t forget to leave us your email address so we can contact you.

And of course, as with everything in life, there are rules to follow. So let’s go through some basic rules and regulations shall we?

“SPOT THE DIFFERENCE” Online Contest Rules & Regulations

  1. The “SPOT THE DIFFERENCE” online contest (“Contest”) is organized by Group Marketing & Branding Division of PROTON Holdings Berhad (“PROTON”).
  2. The contest period is from 29th July 2010 to 31st July 2010 and open to anyone above 18 years of age except employees of PROTON Holdings Berhad and its Group of Companies (“PROTON”) and their immediate families, PROTON’s advertising agencies and appointed distributors.
  3. To stand a chance at winning the limited edition autographed items, the contestant has to:
    1. Be a member of the OFFICIAL PROTON SATRIA NEO SUPER 2000 fan page on Facebook
    2. Be one of the first 5 daily entries with the correct answers.
  4. All cost and expenses incurred by the participants under the Contest shall be borne by the participants themselves.
  5. The judges’ decision is final and no appeal whatsoever shall be entertained.
  6. Winners would be notified via email. If any winner does not respond within 3 days, the next quickest participant with the right answers shall be deemed the winner.
  7. The names of the daily winners will also be posted on this Blog, Facebook and Twitter.
  8. Prizes unclaimed after a period of one (1) month will be forfeited.
  9. PROTON and its agencies shall be entitled to use the winners’ names and/or photographs for the purposes of publicity, advertising and/or trade without any compensation or notice to the winners.

Copyright Info © 2010 Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional Sdn Bhd

So hurry and participate now! Watch this space on Monday, 2nd August 2010 for the winner’s list and see if you made it on the list 😉