KUALA LUMPUR: Describing 2008 as a good year for Malaysian motor sports, Sepang International Circuit (SIC) chairman Datuk Mokhzani Mahathir has called on the local motor sports community to work with them to take Malaysian motor sports to a new era.
As SIC gets ready to stage its 10th edition of the Formula One Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix next year, Mokhzani urged members of the Malaysian motor sports community to work even harder to build on the successes of 2007.
2007 is indeed a spectacular year for Malaysians motor sports industry both on and off track..
We saw the maturing of Jazeman (Jaafar), whom at 14 years old, was scoring regular wins at the Formula BMW Asia Series, which no Malaysian had achieved before,'' said Mokhzani.
We also saw the crowning of Fariqe (Hairuman) of Team Syntium Petronas as Malaysias first ever Asian Touring Car Series champion.
In Formula One, our very own Fairuz (Fauzy) is the test driver of Spyker Ferrari and closing in on our dreams of having a second Malaysian Formula One driver.
To me, however, the most significant moment of 2007 would be the coming together of the Automobile Association of Malaysia (AAM) and the Motor Sports Association of Malaysia (MAM), which I believe is the beginning of a new era for Malaysian motor sports,'' he said at SIC Appreciation Dinner 2007 at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre here yesterday.
After a long stand-off, AAM, the national sporting authority for motor sports in Malaysia had accepted MAM as their affiliate and agreed to allow the new motor sports establishment to issue racing licence and permits for local events.
Mokhzani said: Now that acquiring racing licences are made even easier through AAM and MAM, I would like to call on everyone to convey this message to your friends and colleagues to get their racing licence and join us at the racing track.
The streets are not for racing; and I am sure everyone will agree that racing is more enjoyable and fun at the circuit. Above all, it provides a safe environment for you and the spectators,'' he said.
At the dinner, SIC presented the championship trophies to the overall winners of the Malaysian Super Series, Sepang Drag Battle and the SIC-AAM Malaysian Motor-cross Championship.
Mokhzani said now that all the track resurfacing works are completed, users of SIC track and facilities could expect a smooth running of all racing events at the circuit.
The Malaysian Super Series would again be run with five rounds each for bikes and cars.
The Sepang Drag Battle will feature five rounds again, but SIC are currently re-looking at all the categories competed, with the aim of increasing the quality and tightening the rules of competition.
Similarly, SIC would be conducting the same review on the Merdeka Millennium Endurance Race especially in view of the increasing participation of the Class A and Open class entries,'' said Mokhzani.