Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

Italian government bails out two regional banks

Read more

FASHION

Behind the scenes at Dior’s star-studded desert show

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

That's one long sausage: New world record for French butchers

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Donors pledge millions at Uganda refugee summit

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Depp plumbs depths of bad taste

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

France's new frontman, America's absent centre, May's Brexit gamble

Read more

REVISITED

Senegal’s Casamance hopes for new era of peace

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

FARC disarmament a 'historic day' for Colombia, says president

Read more

ENCORE!

Colombia comes to France

Read more

No night race for Malaysian Grand Prix

Latest update : 2009-02-19

Sepang will host a "twilight" race until 2015, begining at 5 pm, said circuit chairman Mokhzani Mahathir. The proposed night event, already hosted by Singapore and Dubai, would have required costly new floodlighting.

AFP - Malaysian Grand Prix organisers said Thursday they will host a "twilight" race until 2015, saying that a proposed night event would require new floodlighting that was too costly.

Sepang International Circuit (SIC) chairman Mokhzani Mahathir said that Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone had agreed to a start time of 5:00 pm, two hours later than previously.

"We have amended the contract. The race will start at 5:00 pm. It is another way of saying that there will be no night race until 2015," he told reporters.

Mokhzani said the new race time will still enable fans in Europe to watch the race scheduled for April 5, and was expected to attract more locals to the track in the cooler late afternoon.

It will be the second race for the 2009 season after Australia. The start time for the Melbourne race will also be 5:00 pm.

Mokhzani said the cost of lighting up the Sepang circuit was "prohibitive" in the current global economic environment.

"Bernie said to me that 'we will no longer raise the issue'. I told him that we are facing an economic crisis. The night race may or may not attract more people to the circuit," he said.

Mokhzani said however that despite the global economic gloom, some 120,000 people are expected at the Sepang circuit this year.

"We are experiencing an economic slowdown. But we are offering attractive packages and activities to attract spectators," he said.

Malaysia held its first Grand Prix in 1999. Under a new contract signed last year, in which it agreed to be prepared to do night racing, Malaysia will continue to host races until 2015.

Last year neighbouring Singapore hosted the first F1 night race, while Dubai will make its debut this year.

 

Date created : 2009-02-19

COMMENT(S)