20m steel rail pierces Porche

20m steel rail pierces Porche

They take their high-powered supercars to the Sepang International Circuit for time trials.

When the trials are over, some continue to push their cars hard on the busy highways.

Racing enthusiast Kwek Kon Chun, the nephew of billionaire Kwek Leng Beng, died yesterday while driving his Porsche 911 Turbo on the Kuala Lumpur-Seremban Expressway.

Malaysian officials believe he may have been speeding in the early hours.

Deputy Superintendent Markandan Subramaniam told Malaysian newspaper The Star: "They may have been travelling at high speed. The car spun out of control and crashed into the metal road divider."

He added that a 20m steel rail from the divider pierced the car through the driver's side.

The rail pinned the driver, Mr Kwek, and his front-seat passenger, photographer Franco Toh, 43, to their seats.

Fire officers had to cut through the twisted wreck to extract the bodies, and the two men were pronounced dead at the scene at about 3.30am, reported The Star.

The accident happened near Desa Petaling, about 13 km outside of KL's business district. The men may have been travelling towards the city centre after taking part in the Supercar Drag Race on Saturday at 6pm.

Mr Kwek, 35, was driving his supercar which is capable of hitting 100kmh in just over three seconds. The co-owner of popular nightclub Neverland, also had a racing team, Neverland Racing.

WELL-KNOWN

Mr Kwek was well-known in the racing scene in Malaysia's Sepang and had won several races with his Porsche 911.

A eulogy which says "A charismatic man, a humble friend and a true enthusiast. You will be missed," was posted on the website of Timetoattack, a Sepang Circuit racing event.

Malaysian automotive journalist Qhalis Najmi, 21, who knew Mr Kwek from several Timetoattack events, described him as a passionate racer who never missed a single Timetoattack event.

"He was a very competitive guy. Indeed, he was one of the fastest, alongside his Porsche 911 Turbo which was really his partner in racing."

Describing Mr Kwek as "fast, enthusiastic and quick" on track, Mr Qhalis added: "He knew his stuff definitely. I would have never taken him as a person who would take his racing on the streets though, regardless of how fast he was."

Several videos had been posted in the past showing Singapore-registered supercars, including Ferraris, speeding on Malaysian highways.

Some drivers may not be aware of the risks involved.

Said Mr David Ting, editor of car magazine Torque: "At night and at certain stretches, there are opportunities to go very quickly. Of course, it also depends on the individual."

"Some stretches might not be as well-lit as Singapore roads. At higher speeds, the risk goes up substantially as your reaction time is longer and the driving situation changes faster."

He added that the speed limit on the popular North-South Highway, which runs the length of Malaysia, is 110kmh.

But a TNP search online found drivers bragging that they have hit 200kmh and beyond on the same highway.

linheng@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on Nov 10, 2014.
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