KOTA KINABALU, Sabah state, Malaysia -- The Borneo International Harley Owners Group (HOG) Rally, organised by HOG Kuala Lumpur Chapter, will help promote the uniqueness and beautiful features of Sabah state as a tourist destination.

Sabah Tourism Board (STB) general manager, Gordon Yapp said the rally participants travelling to interesting destinations in Sabah on their high-powered, machines would also be sharing their experiences with their friends back home and perhaps with the rest of the world, hence drawing more tourists to Sabah.

"These superbike owners are usually professionals and high-income individuals. That is why we were most happy when the HOG Kuala Lumpur Chapter decided to come to Sabah again to hold the rally . Each time the participants came here, they really enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the valleys and hills while riding through its landscapes.

Yapp said this to reporters after launching the Borneo International HOG Rally, here, Saturday night. The convoy of 120 participants also include riders from the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, Brunei, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia.

Yapp, who is also a high-powered motorcycle rider, said riding such machines in Borneo could be a very unique and exciting experience because besides traversing Sabah and Sarawak, they could also get to travel to Brunei Darussalam and the Kalimantan province of Indonesia.

Therefore, he said, STB very much encouraged tourism activities like this and hoped that HOG Kuala Lumpur Chapter could get more of their friends from across the world to come and enjoy Sabah's natural beauty, especially after the completion of the Pan Borneo Highway project.

He said the convoy would also usually carry out various social responsibility activities that benefited the local residents and this time among them would be the Petronas-sponsored CSR programmes of 'Water for Life' and 'Smart Road Safety' in Labuan.

Meanwhile, HOG Kuala Lumpur Chapter director, TJ Roslan said the nine-day event this time would take the convoy participants on a 1,578km journey starting from Kota Kinabalu then on to Kota Belud, Kundasang, Keningau, Labuan, Brunei Darussalam, Bintulu, Sibu, Saratok, Sri Aman, Serian and ending in Kuching before departing for Kuala Lumpur.

"This rally is an international event. In future, there will be more of such events in Borneo, especially when the Pan Borneo Highway is ready. We will be inviting more international participants.

In light of this, we are very hopeful of assistance from the state and federal governments for such events involving bikers as these could have a positive effect on the economy through activities like currency exchange and sale and purchase of spare parts, he said.


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