Singapore will host its debut Formula One Grand Prix on a street circuit next year and the race may be the first held at night, officials announced on Friday. We never hosted F1 before, I didn’t even know we had a racing track. We have go-karts track somewhere though, doubt they’re using that.
Singapore to host F1 Grand Prix next year
SINGAPORE : Singapore will host its debut Formula One Grand Prix on a street circuit next year and the race may be the first held at night, officials announced on Friday.
The Republic will organise the first of five Grand Prix in either September or early October 2008, with an option to extend to 2017, Trade and Industry Minister S. Iswaran told a briefing.
Iswaran said hosting an F1 race will bring Singapore closer to its ambition of becoming a “vibrant, global city,” adding that the race is estimated to generate about S$100 million (US$66 million) a year in incremental receipts.
The regional financial centre with a somewhat staid reputation is set to open its first integrated resort being built by Las Vegas Sands in 2009.
Iswaran said the Grand Prix, around the downtown Marina Bay district, could “potentially” be held at night if safety can be assured.
…Singapore Tourism Board had evaluated the event and deemed it “worthy” of the government’s support.
The F1 race will be on a 4.8 kilometre (three-mile) street route proposed by designer Hermann Tilke.
Neighbouring Malaysia denied that its long-standing Grand Prix, held earlier in the season, would be affected by Singapore’s race and offered its congratulations.
“I congratulate Singapore on joining the club of Formula One hosts. Next year will be their first year and it will be our 10th,” said Sepang International Circuit chairman Mokhzani Mahathir.
“The people in Southeast Asia will have a chance to see both now, a city street circuit and ours, which is a race circuit, so it will be interesting.”
Malaysia’s sports minister Azalina Othman Said last month said there should only be one F1 race in Southeast Asia, but Mokhzani said the new development would promote the sport.
“It will not affect F1 in Malaysia, instead it will promote F1 in the region,” said Mokhzani.
“Theirs… will be towards the end of the year and ours will be at the beginning, so we will get to see how the season starts and ends,” he added.
Last month Mokhzani announced that Malaysia had won the right to host Formula One races until 2015. – AFP/ms
Okay, enough of local news for today. It’s fun noting Malaysia’s response though. Should there only be one F1 race in Southeast Asia? I certainly hope not, I think two in Southeast Asia is good and healthy competition.