Wednesday, 29 January 2014 | MYT 6:23 PM
Malaysian sponsor for Aspar Team
A file picture of Nicky Hayden. He will be riding for the Aspar Team MotoGP outfit for the 2014 season.
PETALING JAYA: The Aspar Team MotoGP outfit will have a Malaysian main sponsor for the new season.
Energy drink brand DRIVE M7, which is part of Mutiara Motors, is gradually expanding into the Asian, European and North American markets. Hence, it has decided to back the Spanish team.
Aspar, who will be using the new Honda RCV1000R, will have former world champions Nicky Hayden and Hiroshi Aoyama in their new line-up.
Pre-season testing starts next month and the new team colours will be the green, silver and black of DRIVE M7.
American Hayden won the MotoGP world title in 2006 while Japanese Aoyama claimed the 250cc world crown in 2009.
Mutiara Motors managing director Datuk Ahmad Mokhtar said the company is delighted to join forces with the largest private team in MotoGP.
“We are convinced that this alliance will be very important, because both parties share objectives,” he said.
“We don’t only see the Aspar Team project as a matter of sponsorship, but as a coming together of two great entities with common interests.
“We are delighted to have two former world champions in Nicky Hayden and Hiroshi Aoyama as part of the project. They will surely give us plenty to talk about over the coming season.”
Aspar are the second team with Malaysian backing. Last October, Caterham Moto Racing Team, backed by AirAsia chief Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, announced their entrance into the Moto2 world championship.