Motor Sports

Malaysian motorsports need a corporate 'vroom'

KUALA LUMPUR: Sepang International Circuit (SIC) chief executive officer Azhan Shafriman Hanif has called on the corporate sector to help boost the motorsports industry and the talents within it.

Shafriman disclosed that motorsports funding has largely come from the government and Petronas in the past, but this needs to change if the industry is to further grow.

"Funding is one of the elements which helps grow talent in motorsports. I believe all this while the funding has been mostly coming from the government side of things," said Shafriman.

"We also know that Petronas has also been supporting in terms of talent development.

"But I think the weightage of the funding should be more balanced out.

"We need more corporations to come out and support us. I know it is not easy as we are just coming out of the pandemic, a lot of people have pulled out or are holding back on sponsorship."

Shafriman, however, made it clear that he is not implying that funding should solely go to SIC.

"I can be selfish and say that everyone should only come to SIC (with funding) and support us but that is not the case," he said.

"I am looking at the bigger picture, the motorsports industry as a whole. If you see teams doing well, go ahead and support them.

"The industry is not just about the talents (racers), there are also many other people who benefit (from support).

"This includes the people who make the parts, the mechanics, technicians to even the food vendors."

Petronas have played a key role in sponsoring talent development programmes and events across two and four-wheeled motorsports over the past three decades. Former MotoGP rider Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah is one of the talents who have benefited from Petronas' support.

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