Crash.Net MotoGP News
Sepang set to extend Malaysian GP contract
7 January 2010
Malaysia is set to continue hosting a round of the MotoGP World Championship through to 2015 after a multi-year extension was put into motion by Sepang International Circuit directors and MotoGP rights holders Dorna.
The Sepang circuit, situated just outside the capital city Kuala Lumpur, has been fixture on the MotoGP calendar since 1999, but the current contract comes to an end with this year's event in October.
Nonetheless, SIC board of directors have now accepted a proposal for a five-year extension in a deal which will also see a Malaysian rider get a guaranteed world championship entry for each of those years.
“If we agree to the deal with Dorna, it comes with the understanding that we will have a Malaysian rider competing until 2015,” SIC chief executive officer Razlan Razali told the Malaysian Star
“Dorna will also help us to develop our home grown Super Series programme. The aim is to develop young talent to participate in future world championships. After all, what is the point of having a Malaysian Motorcycle GP with no promising local talent coming up?”
Although the deal is still subject to ministry approval, the deal is still expected to go ahead as planned.
Malaysia, which has also held events at Shah Alam and Johor over the last 18 years, has not had a full-time grand prix rider since Shahrol Yuzy in 2002, but plans are afoot for his protégé, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, to enter this season's 125cc world championship with a Malaysian-based team.
Zulfahmi and Elly Idzlianizar Ilias participated in last year's Malaysian Grand Prix, with both finishing just outside the points.