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Nov 24, 2001

Fogarty To Run Petronas-sponsored Sauber World SuperbikeTeam

From a press release:

CARL Fogarty has agreed a deal with Malaysian oil and gas producers PETRONAS which breaks new ground in motorcycling.

PETRONAS will sponsor the four-times World Superbike champion to run his own team in the series for five years, using a development of their GP1 engine.

And, in a unique development, PETRONAS are to fund the mass-production of a Foggy brand of road bike.

The Sauber-designed, Petronas-sponsored racebike once destined for the MotoGP Series will now be raced in World Superbike by a team run by Carl Fogarty. Photo by Sportsphotography, copyright 2001.
The 36-year-old British rider, forced into retirement through injury last year, is thrilled by the chance to launch a new phase of his glittering career.

He said: "This is a once in a life-time opportunity and the biggest deal of my career.

"I am determined to repay the faith shown in me by PETRONAS by displaying the same commitment to winning that I showed during my riding career.

"I have been focused on setting up my own team since retirement but did not dream I would be doing it as a 'new manufacturer'! So I am doubly determined to make this a success.

Another view of the Petronas, aka Sauber, racebike as seen at Sepang during the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend. Photo by Sportsphotography, copyright 2001.
"My company, Team Foggy Racing Ltd, has been working on this deal for months and it is such a relief to be finally able to announce it to the world."

Fogarty raced for a PETRONAS-sponsored team in the Malaysian championships in 1992 and used his friendship with Malaysia-based businessman David Wong, PETRONAS' consultant in their World Superbike project, to set up the deal.

The project represents a departure from original plans to run the GP1 in the MotoGP series, with PETRONAS opting to use the legendary status of Fogarty and his huge worldwide following to launch into the road bike manufacturing sector.

Paolo Flammini, president of SBK International, who run the World Superbike series, welcomed the PETRONAS initiative.

He said: "Carl Fogarty is a legend of superbikes and we are extremely happy that he will continue his new life in our championship.

"This initiative is further proof of the appeal of the World Superbike series has towards the motorcycle industry and new commerce in that industry.

"We are proud to have the project focused on this series."

Foggy PETRONAS Racing aim to start the series at the fifth round at Monza on May 12.

Neil Mackenzie with the Sauber during a demonstration at the Malaysian Grand Prix. The bike will now compete in World Superbike instead of MotoGP, as a Petronas. Photo by Sportsphotography, copyright 2001.
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