Start, Sepang, Malaysia, 2017

No current plans to host Malaysian GP again, says Sepang CEO

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In the round-up: The CEO of the Sepang International Circuit says the circuit does not have plans to bring the Malaysian Grand Prix to the F1 calendar in the near future

In brief

No current plans to host Malaysian GP again, says Sepang CEO

The CEO of the Sepang International Circuit says the circuit does not have plans to bring the Malaysian Grand Prix to the F1 calendar in the near future

Azhan Shafriman Hanif said the circuit would require significant support from the Malaysian business community to be able to bring Formula 1 back to the country.

“We should look at the big picture holistically, at how F1 can benefit not only the company but also Malaysia in terms of branding, ability to provide employment opportunities, talent development and others,” Hanif told local media including Bernama yesterday.

“So, when we pay for the relatively high (F1) organising rights, the return should be high overall, not only from the SIC aspect.”

The current Formula 1 season has 22 confirmed races following the cancellation of the Russian Grand Prix. F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali said the sport would have “no problem at all” finding a replacement for the race.

Mission Winnow returns as listed Ferrari partner

Philip Morris brand Mission Winnow has reappeared as a partner of Ferrari’s F1 team after it was taken off the team’s cars at the end of last season.

The logo appears on Ferrari’s website as one of the team’s partners. Whereas previously it was a title sponsor for the team, the brand is currently listed as a secondary partner, alongside other supporters such as Ray Ban, AWS and Richard Mille.

Ericsson “confident” he can compete for IndyCar title

Marcus Ericsson says he is confident of his ability to fight for this year’s IndyCar Series title.

The Chip Ganassi driver sits fifth in the standings after two races following this third place finish at the last race at Texas. Ericsson says he came into the 2022 championship with the goal of becoming champion.

“I started off this year, St. Petersburg – I think we should have been on the podium without the pit lane penalty that put me back from fourth to 25th,” Ericsson said. “I think that shows how much pace me and the car had there.

“To come to Texas, a superspeedway, finish on the podium – we’re going to be contenders. We will be all year. I’m feel confident, ready to take that fight and get the championship.”

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Comment of the day

Should F1 play national anthems of teams and drivers as part of podium ceremonies? Reader johnandtonic believes it’s time to consider an alternative approach…

I do wish that F1 would move away from its nationalist views and projections. F1 is not football, etc, where the teams are made up of people from that country. F1 teams have a history which is more complicated and have been associated with many countries. Neither teams or drivers are supported/funded by their nation states and most teams are based in the UK and I suspect with mostly people from the UK. F1 should aim to be a world sport without boundaries and getting rid of national anthems would be a good place to start. I would think they could be replaced by team/driver anthems which would create a better team identity and could be folded into the marketing/PR.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Majormilou, Nico Savidge, Ripping Silk, Christopher and Nic Morley!

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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32 comments on “No current plans to host Malaysian GP again, says Sepang CEO”

  1. Lewisham Milton
    2nd April 2022, 0:07

    Nothing about Rosberg?
    Fair play to the compiler of today’s roundup…

    1. What about him? At least post a link instead of leaving us wondering…

      1. Link to nothing? I don’t think you understood his sarcasm, or that’s at least how I understood it.

  2. Cotd couldn’t be more wrong about drivers national anthems. Teams I see his reason, but drivers? No…

  3. I like how SA responded to friday’s attack by killing a bunch of people saturday morning #workingweekends #totallyworthit

  4. Daniel Ricciardo rejected ‘stratospheric’ Red Bull offer, Christian Horner reveals


    1. He left because it became clear they would be behind Max in all things, regardless of the rights and wrongs.

      He didn’t want to be a second driver, the risk of dud team was worth the chance of a winning car and #1 somewhere else. It didn’t work out, but that was the motivation. That, and escaping the whiny Horner.

        1. @johnrkh and Danny Just so we’re clear, Max came into DR’s RBR and won his first race with the team (with some luck) having started after 4 races had been run in 2016. Max proceeded to then show impressive pace but was making a lot of youthful mistakes that often handed points and positions to DR, until Max finally got stung hard enough to change his ways post Monaco-2018. After that he strongly outperformed DR, once he was no longer taking himself out of the fight with overenthusiastic mistakes.

          This to say, if DR didn’t want to be a second driver he had it within his control to affect that, but he is simply not on Max’s level and couldn’t stem the tide.

          Yes RBR were enthusiastic about Max from the getgo, but DR had ample time to prove himself against Max, and perhaps ended up feeling like a second, but that is credit to Max for what he himself did on the track, particularly after he learned his lesson in Monaco and became much more discerning with his choices of moves to make and when.

          1. @robbie

            but that is credit to Max for what he himself did on the track, particularly after he learned his lesson in Monaco and became much more discerning with his choices of moves to make and when.

            Um yeah, you seem to have missed the 2021 season, as for the rest no.

  5. I wanna see a triple header: Saudi, Iran and Syria…then a two week break and North Korea.

    1. If the teams had to travel overland to each venue then we might have real “Drive to Survive” on our hands ;)

      1. add GPs in Afghanistan And Pakistan

    2. And American GP should be in the Death Valley instead of Vegas (although that wouldn’t be such a huge difference to me).

  6. Yes I’m sure they _can_ easily find a replacement for Sepang, but tracks like Vegas are a joke compared to proper tracks like Sepang.

  7. ady (@sixwheeler)
    2nd April 2022, 7:10

    RE cotd: agreed, it is irrelevant playing a national anthem for a guy who probably lives in monaco in order to avoid paying tax in his home country

    1. I’d rather have them ditch the bullfighter (!) from Carmen while they are celebrating- oh and why do they have to repeat a decades old “joke” which wasn’t even funny the first time? I’m mean the spillage of perfectly good wine, so childish

  8. Jonathan Parkin
    2nd April 2022, 7:49

    Just out of interest how do hosting fees compare between F1 and Indycar. This may be false but I was lead to understand that hosting fees in Indycar were relatively small compared to the stratospheric costs of F1

    1. The two series are similar, Jonathon, except F1 has a couple more digits…

      Anyway, world championships and domestic series are not really comparable.

    2. These contracts are rarely made public, but it’s been said that an average Indycar venue will pay about US$ 1 million and 2 million. In F1, hosting fees are all over the place, with Monaco and Spa-Francorchamps being near the bottom at about US$ 20 million, and F1 supposedly extracting more than double those figures from Azerbaijan and Qatar. Abu Dhabi also pays a premium for hosting the season finale.

      1. @MichaelN Rarely? More like never (or only until some time has passed like with Senna’s & Piquet’s old Lotus contracts) since contracts generally are confidential.

        1. @jerejj One exception is Laguna Seca, as it is owned by Monterey County. In 2018, when the county board had to vote on whether to bring IndyCar back, they released the agreement as a matter of public record. It was nominally $1.5 million, but only $1.2 million if IMSA raced on the weekend before or after. That’s partly what puts the numbers MichaelN mentions for IndyCar on solid ground.

  9. Sepang won’t be back on F1’s calendar, sadly.
    It was the cheapest event to attend when it was – but in a global economy, they simply can’t compete.

    Drivers won’t be doing collective charity races together anymore. Those days are long gone.
    Virtue signalling is the new action.

    Ricciardo left Red Bull not just for the Honda engine, but for the team dynamic. It was Verstappen’s team before he left, and has only become even more so since.

  10. Sepang should have a place in calendar.

    You can take a cigarette away from a man but you can’t take cigarette away from an italian team.

    If Mercedes aren’t going to improve their pace Toto’s comments will make him look like an old fool.

    From a marketing point of view yes but sport is still so deeply rooted that they will play national anthems for a long time. You can’t get better chills than hearing your own national anthem after your countryman has won a race for the first time or for a long time

  11. I wish people stop saying that Ricciardo’s Renault move was a mistake. At that time, it made perfect sense. In mid-2018, being in a manufacturer-backed team was essential. 3 out of the 4 manufacturers had their no.1 drivers anointed then – Vettel, Hamilton, Verstappen (once Red Bull’s Honda move was finalized) – and it is only those no. 1 drivers who were ever going to have a shot at the WDC.
    If Ricciardo wanted to be #1 in a manufacturer backed team (which he would have wanted, as would any other driver), then Renault was the only option.

    His move to Mclaren on the other hand, I understand less.

    1. @sumedhvidwans Well I don’t know how much Alonso’s comeback was part in that move? Ricciardo wants to fight for wins and if Mclaren isn’t good enough next year I think that will be Ricciardo’s last.

  12. I am very much in favour of never going to Sepang again, unless and until they fix their damn circuit and remove the alterations they put in before their last GP.

    F Sepang and their meddling with a perfectly fine track.

  13. So, Istanbul Park, that is, although more seriously, I’m surprised how long the replacement choice becoming official has taken considering those ‘no problem at all’ words.

    I wish Mercedes could get on par with RBR & Ferrari, but unfortunately, budget cap & wind tunnel time allocation limit their chances.

    I disagree with COTD. I’ve never had an issue with national anthems on podium ceremonies & still don’t, so I don’t see any need for stopping this tradition. ”If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

  14. Phillip Morris is a joke these days – “Mission Winnow” – and they are back, again. Smoking is a curse.

  15. I disagree with COTD. I enjoy the national anthems and I think the nationality of the driver is still an important factor in why many people support a driver. I do accept that the drivers may personally have a limited connection to their particular country. The anthems are of less importance for teams though bearing in mind their working locations.

    Having driver or team anthems sounds a very fake, all American razzmatazz type of idea. I hate the idea but Liberty would probably love it.

  16. RocketTankski
    3rd April 2022, 19:00

    Those pictures of McLaren’s testing facility helps explain why they are struggling this year

Comments are closed.