UMW Toyota Motor (UMWT) has announced the conclusion of Season 3 of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Festival and Toyota Vios Challenge. The last of the four scheduled rounds, which was supposed to be held in April in Sepang, did not happen due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting movement control order (MCO).

With that, Tengku Djan Ley has been crowed the overall champion of the Super Sporting class for professional drivers, while Hayden Haikal, 16, has won the Sporting class for amateur drivers. In the Promotional class for celebrity racers, musician and TV personality Shawn Lee dominated the season with three wins and rightly takes the overall crown.

“It is certainly not the most ideal way to conclude what has traditionally been a closely-contested championship. Like the previous two seasons, the Toyota Vios Challenge is unique in that as a one-make series, emphasis has always been on a level playing field, driving skills and experience which ultimately resulted in no clear winner emerging until the very last race,” said Akio Takeyama, chief motorsports officer of Toyota Gazoo Racing Malaysia.

“Season 3 had again demonstrated this spirit of competition, but inevitably the final race must yield to an even greater agenda which is to place national interest and public safety ahead of all other matters,” he added.

Takeyama, who is also the deputy chairman of UMWT, said the final results were made after careful deliberation, and in adherence to all provisions in the technical and sporting regulations of the championship. They also held discussions with the Motorsports Association of Malaysia (MAM), and the decision is also consistent with the best practices of international motor-racing events.

Season 3 of the Toyota Vios Challenge one-make race kicked off in Kuala Terengganu in September 2019 before moving to Bandar Malaysia in November 2019 and Batu Kawan in Penang in February 2020. The good news is that a fourth season has been confirmed.

“Season 4 will be an entirely different experience, offering racers, teams and participating dealers not only an enhanced racing format but also prize and reward structure. Without revealing too much too soon, I would also like to announce that the Toyota Gazoo Racing spirit will extend beyond the Toyota Vios Challenge and provide racers with additional racing programs to compete in. Another element we are closely looking into is talent development and expansion of TGR e-Racing,” Takeyama revealed.