Yuey Tan: It’s all about the team!
Behind every driver is a team that setup, maintain and repair the Porsche GT3 Carrera Cup car . In the case of #5 driver Yuey Tan, this responsibility lies with McElrea racing engineer, Minal Kanagasundaram and a high performing combination of experience and speed, with mechanics provided by Malaysian based EKS Motorsports.
“It’s a story that is not told enough in motorsport,” began thirty-two year old driver, Yuey Tan. “The team behind the running of the race car are really the true miracle workers and the pressure on them to do a good and fast job on the car is always mega tough! When I drive well, everyone is happy but when I hit a wall or don’t finish a race, I know it’s as bad for them as it is for me!”
Since 2009, Yuey Tan has run with engineering support from McElrea Racing, one of Australia’s best performing teams in the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia during the sports history. During that time, engineers that Tan has worked with includes team chief Andy McElrea, Leigh Geyer, Hayden Morris and most recently, the highly experienced Minal Kanagasundaram who worked for Jaguar Formula One and BMW AC Schnizter for several seasons.
It is the role of the engineer to read the conditions and setup the car in a way to make the car fast and comfortable to be driven by the driver. From the drivers perspective, it is also very important for the driver to feedback correct information to the engineer. The relationship between the driver and engineer is of paramount importance so that the driver can get a good car suited to his style from the engineer.
“Being engineered by McElrea Racing engineers is something that I have been lucky with. A lot of guys in motorsport don’t end up with the correct engineers and this is a big problem. Much of the performance depends on the job these guys do of a driver so being educated, engineered, coached and mentored by a highly experienced engineer is very important,” continued Tan. “Working with Minal over the last two seasons has been something that has been awesome for me. He’s been in Formula One and also with one of the BMW factory teams so what he has seen, the data they have collected, and the tests they have conducted are pretty space-aged. He seems to know a thing or two as a result!”
“There are loads of engineers that don’t know what’s going on so to aspiring drivers out there, you’ve got to be careful. I have seen a few dubious blokes claiming to be engineers in the Singapore Karting scene to mention something close to home!”
Another element of the race setup surrounding Tan is also the mechanical support for the car with three mechanics working on the Dorr Havelock Racing car including Charlie Ramos, Noel Anand and Mike. These mechanics are provided, managed and trained by one of Asia’s most experienced racing team providers, EKS Motorsport. While Mike is new on the crew in 2014, Charlie and Noel have been working with Yuey since 2009 creating a very happy and efficient atmosphere within the team.
“The boys that work on the car are the most amazing fellas! In addition to all the mega amounts of preparation that Minal puts them through, every time I take a spin, they have to clean the car and take the stones out which takes several hours. Every time we make contact with cars during the races, it’s them that has to repair it. When nothing goes wrong, they have to clean it. If we cannot make the timeline, we have to anyway and they work all throughout the night. They do the pit stops. All the hard work comes down to these guys. It’s not just hard manual labour either. Its 12-16 hours a day of hard labour but done with speed, precision and reliability!”
For more information on McElrea Racing and EKS Motorsports, please visit their websites.
About McElrea Racing Founded in 2009, McElrea Racing is a fully equipped race team providing the best ‘arrive and drive’ motorsport experience in Australia and Asia. McElrea Racing boasts an incredibly talented and experienced group of fun loving personalities who make McElrea Racing one of the most respected and well known race service providers in Australasia. Web – mcelrearacing.com
About EKS Motorsports Appointed by Porsche Motorsport of Germany, EKS Motorsports has been the Official Technical Service Provider for the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Championship for the last 12 years from 2003 to 2014.
The Malaysian company provides Porsche-trained mechanics and the full and comprehensive technical support to all teams and drivers competing in the championship, ensuring that the race cars are race-prepared, set-up, maintained or repaired for a weekend of racing. Established in 1990, the company’s high degree of professionalism, vast experience, sound technical competency and valuable networking have been built on a successful motor-racing career spanning over the last 20 years. This has seen EKS Motorsports evolve from a championship-winning racing team to providing team management and technical consultancy for various disciplines in motor-racing.
Web – eksmotorsports.com