Singaporean motorbike racer killed in Sepang track crash

The accident scene on Sunday at Malaysia’s Sepang track. Racing veteran Milton Poh hit another bike that veered into his lane. -- PHOTO: SCREEN GRAB FROM YOUTUBE
The accident scene on Sunday at Malaysia’s Sepang track. Racing veteran Milton Poh hit another bike that veered into his lane. -- PHOTO: SCREEN GRAB FROM YOUTUBE

A veteran motorbike racer was killed in an accident at Malaysia's Sepang race track on Sunday.

Singaporean Milton Poh Kim Seng, 41, a Singapore Airlines flight steward who had been racing for about nine years, hit another bike that had lost control and veered into his lane.

The impact of the accident, which occurred just seconds after the race was flagged off, flung him into a wall.

Both Mr Poh and the other rider, Italian Leonardo Sacchetto, 42, were sent to Hospital Putrajaya, Sepang International Circuit said in a statement.

Mr Poh died from head injuries, while Mr Sacchetto is being treated for leg injuries.

Malaysian police are investigating the case as causing death by reckless or dangerous driving, reported news provider Utusan Malaysia.

Local bikers said that Mr Poh was a well-known figure in the racing scene here, and had been a mentor to many.

Mr Andrew Morrice, director of Ram Racing Engineering - a motorsports equipment company which sponsored Mr Poh's races - said that his death had come as a shock to fellow bike enthusiasts, as Mr Poh was known to be a careful rider.

He added that Mr Poh, who was riding his personal BMW sportsbike during the event, often participated in races together with his older brother, Mr Martin Poh. The siblings were both riding in the Malaysian Super Series (MSS) race in which Mr Milton Poh crashed.

The air steward, who is single, was also the sole proprietor of a company called Inera, which The Straits Times understands deals in automotive parts.

Mr Poh was also well versed in motorbike tuning, said Mr Mark Yeoh, 26, who rents a space at Ram Racing's Kaki Bukit address and would see Mr Poh there three to four times every week.

Besides picking up the skills in his free time, Mr Poh had also gone to the United States for courses and to get accreditation on superbike tuning, Mr Yeoh said.

"Guys who wanted their bikes tuned, they would turn to him," said Mr Yeoh, who owns a business selling scooters. "He was more than just a racer - he was also an engineer, and he guided a lot of rookies in the MSS."

Added Mr Yeoh: "He was one of those who had a lot of passion for the sport, and devoted a lot of time and money to participate in races across the border."

This is the second fatality in three days at the Sepang circuit. Last Friday, a novice Malaysian rider died in an accident during a practice session.

yanliang@sph.com.sg

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