Glimpse of life in the fast lane


WORK hard at what you love and never give up until you have achieved your goal.

That was the advice Hibbatuulah Mohamad Fuad (pic) has for aspiring mechanics.

As the only Malaysian mechanic in the MotoGP scene, Habib as he is fondly known, drove home the point that learning is a lifetime experience.

“Be willing to learn from others.

“I always look to improve my skills by learning from my team members,” he said, adding that perseverance in the face of difficulties is a must in this challenging career.

“Learn from your mistakes. I, too, had to grow from experience to improve myself.”Habib was speaking to Despark College automative students during the recent ‘Shaping Industry-ready Graduates’ virtual talk to empower the next generation of professionals in the motorsports industry, Petronas said in a press release dated July 13.

He said it was important for students to adapt to the situation.

Besides offering practical advice to his enthusiastic audience, Habib also opened up about his professional journey to becoming a mechanic for Petronas Sprinta Racing, a Moto2 team in the MotoGP World Championship.

Habib shared his experience of working with some of the best engineers and scientists in the field.

He also described the technicalities of his job, and shared the challenges and highlights of supporting the racing team.

“Learn new languages if you need to, as was the case for me.

“I had to learn Spanish to communicate with fellow mechanics on the team.

“Focus on your goals and what you want to achieve,” he said, adding that despite being away from his family and having to endure the extreme weather during races, he remains undeterred in striving to be good at a job he enjoys.

Thanks to his father, an avid motorcycle racer, Habib was already familiar with the industry at the tender age of 11.

Habib’s passion for two-wheelers began from a young age.

He started tinkering with bicycles at the age of 15 before moving on to assembling and fixing motorcycles as a mechanic for budding motorcyclists in the entry-level Petronas Cub Prix in 2003.He then moved on to work on machines for the Asian Championship, Spanish Championship and finally, the World Championship.

Habib fielded many questions from some 250 students who attended the event – many of whom were excited to ask about the latest technology in MotoGP, the differences between Moto3, Moto2 and MotoGP, as well as the specifications of the bikes used by their favourite riders in the Petronas Sprinta Racing Team.

The event, organised by Petronas Lubricant International in collaboration with Despark College, is part of a series of talks that aims to bridge the gap between theoretical and practical knowledge in the motorsports industry.

Petronas Lubricant International regional managing director (Asia) Giuseppe Pedretti said the event was held to enrich the learning experience of students by giving them access to industry leaders.

Since the onset of the Covid-19 health crisis last year, college and university students in Malaysia have had to experience virtual learning, which led to many challenges especially for education.

For students studying in vocational schools, the hurdles involve mastering practical hands-on skills.

Despark College business development manager Ahmad Firdaus Mansor said now, more than ever, relevant industry insights are crucial in ensuring the quality of education and in preparing students for their future.

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