Many people don’t know this, but my interest in cars and driving only developed several years ago. And, like most newbies, I imagined myself to be a pretty competent driver and enjoyed straight line acceleration. It was my first drive up Ulu Yam (UY) which made me realize how inflated my self-ego was, and that I had much to learn to refine my driving skills.
While some enthusiasts may refer to the UY route as one that marks a driver’s “coming of age”, the simple truth is that it is one of the few fun roads that is close to Kuala Lumpur. The common starting point is at the Petronas station in Sg. Tua and the end is usually at the cable car bridge, after the police checkpoint. The UY route is loosely divided into two stages; the first stage has more straights and is generally faster, and once you drive through the small UY town, the second stage is curvier and more technical.
My first time up UY was, for lack of better words, pretty memorable. I had some 300 PS and 350 Nm on tap, but as I was not familiar with the roads, the faster, more experienced drivers had left me in the dust and the cars with a lot less power were far behind. Because I’m also hopeless with directions, the whole ordeal was pretty intimidating. Thankfully, common sense prevailed and I slowed down and signaled the car behind (that had caught up) to pass me and lead the way.
Below are a couple of pointers that we believe are relevant for anyone who wishes to go up UY:
1. Its not a race – there are no prizes for being first to reach the top
2. Respect the folks in UY town – slow down, don’t rev your engines
3. Do not tailgate the car in front of you; no points for causing an accident
4. If you are holding up traffic, find a safe spot to slow down to allow the car(s) behind to pass
5. Know your limits – you don’t have to corner at the same speed as the car(s) ahead of you
The team here at #MTHRFKNWIN know that there are still many who have not yet experienced UY, so we thought we’d come up with a video as a sort of beginner’s guide to one of Malaysia’s favourite driving roads. In the meantime, should you have any questions or comments, please feel free to share this with us in comments below. Enjoy the video!