• Malaysian Grand Prix

Malaysia eyes night race to boost attendance

ESPNF1 Staff
February 25, 2011 « Maldonado 'definitely naturally talented' - Williams | »
A night race could be on the cards in Malaysia to attract more spectators © Sutton Images
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Organisers of the Malaysian Grand Prix are keen to host a night race before their current race contract expires in 2015.

Circuit boss Razlan Razali, who has admitted to AFP that the event has "lost its lustre" since its debut in 1999, said the success of Singapore's floodlit street race has hurt Malaysia.

"And our biggest competitor is the television as many people prefer to watch the race from the comfort of their homes," said Razali.

He said a quick fix to boost spectator numbers would be to organise a night race.

"We should do one night race before we extend the 2015 contract," Razali said. "Maybe this will attract a bigger crowd as the weather at night will be cool."

Despite Sepang having some of the cheapest tickets on the F1 calendar, Razali revealed that less than 100,000 spectators attended the three-day event at the "tired-looking" venue in 2010. He admitted that attendance this April could be even worse, adding that he has received no reply from the government about his request for funding to make renovations.

"When it rains, it [the grandstand roof] leaks," Razali added. "People are not happy. The circuit was built in record time but unfortunately there were shortcuts and poor maintenance."