Jan 30, 2012
MALAYSIA AIRLINES SPONSORS THE WHITE JERSEY
27 January 2012, KUALA LUMPUR - The organisation of Le Tour de Langkawi, recognised by the International Cycling Union (UCI) with an ‘Excellent Level of Organization’, has led Malaysia’s Leading Airline to continue it’s support for the 17th edition of the race, scheduled to be held from 24 February to 4 March.
Malaysia Airlines Berhad has been a long running corporate partner of the race. This year once again the sponsor for the White jersey of the Best Asian Rider Classification.
First introduced in 1998 the jersey was since worn by Asia’s best, including Hong Kong’s Wong Kam Po (2000, 2001), Indonesian hero Tonton Susanto (1998, 2002, 2009), Iranians Ghader Mizbani (2004, 2007) and Hossein Askari (2006), South Korean Gong Hyo-Suk (2010) and from Japan - the Fukushima brothers Koji (2005) and Shinichi (2008), Hideto Yukinari (1999) and Tomoya Kano (2003).
The 2011 edition saw Iranian rider, Rahim Emami taking the best Asian rider jersey and was also part of the Azad University Cycling squad which won best Asian team. It wasn’t an easy win for him as the team had experienced difficulty in Stage 4 Cameron Highlands with a puncture in the last 10 kilometre and crashed in the downhill, loosing 2-3 minutes of precious time.
In a sponsorship and jersey handover ceremony held at LTdL2012 Secretariat in Bukit Jalil, Malaysia Airlines Regional Senior Vice President Sales Malaysia, Azman Ahmad said, “It is a privilege for Malaysia Airlines to be associated with the Le Tour de Langkawi 2012, an annual cycling tournament that attracts top professionals teams from around the world.”
“Having just won an award as ‘World’s Leading Airline to Asia’, it makes good business sense to be a proud sponsor for the Asian Champion jersey, the overall leading rider among Asian participants at the tournament. I am sure this year’s event will outshine last year’s and we can expect yet another thrilling race that will be a fight to the finish for the first time in Kuala Terengganu.” He added.
In line with the Youth and Sport’s Ministry’s objective to expand the Sports Industry in Malaysia, MAS wishes to take their brand to greater heights with the continuation of their partnership with LTdL 2012.
“We are pleased to be part of this strategic collaboration and partnership with Ministry of Youth and Sports, the organisers of the Le Tour de Langkawi 2012. Sports sponsorship is one of the best branding investments and we aim to leverage on this initiative to position our brand growth presence, against the front- end and corporate air travel market.” Azman Ahmad continued. “This is also our contribution towards the Malaysian Government’s Economic Transformation Programme entry point for the tourism sector that targets more international events to attract tourists and provide a boost to Malaysia’s tourism industry. Our association with reputable sporting events such as this is certain to promote Malaysia as an international destination for sports, business and tourism.”
Also present in the sponsorship ceremony were Director of MSN Sports Management Division Dato’ Hj. Ab Jalil Abdullah and Tuan Haji Abu Samah Abdul Wahab president of Malaysian National Cycling Federation.
Dato’ Hj Ab Jalil also expressed the organiser’s appreciation towards the support received from Malaysia Airlines as the preferred Airline of the Tour. “On behalf of the Organizing Committe we would like to thank MAS for their contribution to ensure the smooth running of the event, all the participating teams will be able to travel safely to Malaysia, I am sure they will be well taken care of with MAS’s ‘Malaysian Hospitality’.”
Malaysia Airlines has been a consistent participant in Malaysia's sports tourism activities by being the official airline for events such as CIMB Asia Pacific Classic and the recently held Monsoon Cup
LTdL 2012 is organised by the National Sports Council as a mark of continuity to the organisation of the Ministry of Youth and Sports in 2010 and 2011 in collaboration with the Malaysian National Cycling Federation. The race maintains a 2.HC (Hors Classe) status and is recognised and sanctioned by the UCI and UCI Asia Tour. LTdL 2012 is expected to feature 22 professional teams.
The 10 day race begins on February 24 with Individual time trial along a 20.3 km course in Putrajaya to kick off the race; followed by stage 2 Putrajaya - Melaka (151.0km); Stage 3 Ayer Keroh - Parit Sulong (187.6km); Batu Pahat - Muar (169.4km); Ayer Keroh - Pandan Indah (190km); Proton Shah Alam - Genting Highlands (108km); Bentong - Kuantan (205.8km); Pekan - Chukai (100.8km); Kemasik - Kuala Terengganu (165.7km) dan Tasik Kenyir - Kuala Terengganu (114.8km).