The stage could not have been better for PETRONAS to introduce its newly formulated PETRONAS Sprinta engine oil in MotoGP. The sun was shining at the historic TT Circuit Assen but PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s Fabio Quartararo gleamed brighter than most as he powered his Yamaha YZR-M1 to not only set a third pole position of the season but claimed a podium around the fiercely fast course in northern Europe.
It’s been an incredible rookie season for PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team rider Fabio Quartararo. What’s so exceptional was Fabio being awarded Rookie of the Year honours in his first season in the MotoGP World Championship and also becoming the Independent Riders’ Champion. He has successfully helped the team to take the Independent Teams’ title in their first season in the premier class.
Fabio’s brilliant weekend around a race track renowned for its speed and technical demands was the latest achievement in what has been an impressive campaign to-date for the new team and the integration of PETRONAS’ product and engineering into the MotoGP paddock. In one of the interviews, Fabio mentioned there wasn’t any bikes that are easy to ride in MotoGP, however, Yamaha is perhaps among the bikes one of the most familiar for a rookie. This indeed helped to keep the rider working in a simple way instead of doing the wrong things during the race.
Uniquely formulated to suit the characteristics of the Yamaha YZR-M1, Sprinta is expected to boost engine performance and reliability while providing superior engine cleanliness. Better yet, the development of Sprinta was carried out using PETRONAS’ proprietary base oil produced from its refinery in Melaka, Malaysia and the whole process was completed in less than a year.
After setting a scorching hot lap in qualifying on Saturday, the 20 year old French star was part of a presentation line-up to announce the integration of PETRONAS Sprinta with PETRONAS Yamaha SRT in front of a select gathering of international media.
The racer was joined by Noor Afiza Mohd Yusof General Manager, Brand Management Department, Group Strategic Communications; Dr Andrea Dolfi, Head, R&D Fluid Technology Solutions, Technology Research, Group Research & Technology (GR&T) Project Delivery & Technology (PD&T); Dato Razlan Razali, Team Principal PETRONAS Sepang Racing Team; PETRONAS Yamaha SRT Team Manager, Wilco Zeelenberg.
“PETRONAS is highly motivated to leverage on MotoGP to showcase our technology, products and people. When we first embarked on the project to develop Sprinta, the timeline given was two years but in less than a year, we have already successfully assimilated two products into the bikes – Tutela (transmission fluids) and Sprinta (engine oil). We are proud to have reached this milestone in such a short span of time and to have Fabio take pole and finish the race on the podium makes PETRONAS Sprinta debut even more special!” said Afiza.
Dato Razlan who was very pleased of this weekend’s outcome commented, “PETRONAS debuted their Sprinta engine oil in the Yamaha YZR-M1 and were rewarded with pole and a podium. This is a great endorsement of their technical prowess and a well-deserved reward for the support they have given this team. This is a very happy team today but we remain focused to keep improving and delivering at the very best we can.”
Wilco, a former Grand Prix racer with three podium finishes in Assen said, “MotoGP engine combustion, RPM and temperatures are amazing – very high – and to develop high performance engine oil in such a short period of time that functions so well is really impressive and we, the team are very happy with it.”
Dr Andrea Dolfi on the other hand explained some of the work and chemistry – as well as the challenges – that went into the completion of PETRONAS Sprinta and how the company were able to count on a very comprehensive collaboration with Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd.,
“It has been an amazing journey for us because we were tasked with a tight timeline to deliver important results. We started with Tutela because it was the product that concerned us the most: the gearbox is paramount to the rider’s safety. If something breaks down then it might become stuck, broken and the rider could crash while riding at 300kmph.
“Then we looked into delivering performance and reliability through Sprinta. Reliability is an important element in motorsports because there is no point in going faster and having more power if you damage the engine or do not finish the race. The key for this success, which we are starting to enjoy right now, is the collaboration between us (PETRONAS) and Yamaha,” he added.
Moving further and faster is also the job of one man in particular. The last word went to Fabio – who’s debut season in MotoGP continues to surprise and delight, much like the splash that PETRONAS have made on the championship already with a podium finish and roles as race protagonists with less than half a season in the books.
“We adapted quite fast to this bike and in Qatar is where we already felt that the Yamaha was in good shape with the team,” he evaluated. “I think the comfort we have here, with all the partners, people and support of experts like PETRONAS, is like a family and this is really important in MotoGP,” he said.