SUPERCARS expects to know by the end of the month whether they’ll be racing on the streets of Kuala Lumpur this year.
The sport’s latest overseas jaunt has hit a snag with a legal dispute between a new race promoter and their predecessor casting doubts over the event’s viability in 2016.
Supercars chief executive James Warburton is set to travel to Malaysia in the next few days to meet with organisers.
Warburton though doesn’t believe the dispute, should it impact the 2016 running, will prevent the event being held in future years.
“We’ve got a four-year agreement,” Warburton told Inside Supercars.
“It’s a fantastic event … there’s some problems with the shareholding and there’s some legal disputes. They’ve just kicked off in Malaysia.
“We’ll make a determination by the end of May as to what happens this year, but the wherewithall from the promoter is for it to be on.”
Warburton says despite the Kuala Lumpur dramas, V8s plans to push into Asia are ongoing with interest from Thailand, Indonesia and Japan in hosting events.
The Supercars boss has also played down fears about a manufacturer walkout in the wake of Volvo’s motorsport arm Polestar revealing it will not continue its relationship with Garry Rogers Motorsport (GRM) past this season.
GRM owner Garry Rogers has announced his intention to continue racing Volvo product in a non-factory outfit next year and Warburton hopes the Swedish manufacturer helps that happen.
“No-one was ready for it because the expectation was that Volvo would renew for three years,” Warburton said.
“The program through Garry Rogers Motorsport and particularly Scotty McLaughlin, it’s made Volvo pretty cool. I would hope that Volvo Sweden — and I certainly plan to make my voice known — do the right thing and if Garry does want to continue to roll forward with Volvo product, do the right thing and we end the relationship properly.” Volvo’s withdrawal comes amid doubts over Nissan’s future in the championship and concerns even Holden may step back.
Warburton says a lack of manufacturer support would be a worry but not terminal to the championship’s future.
“We’d have to look at the overall sustainability of the teams … manufacturers come and go in motor racing, that’s the reality of life,” he said.
“We’re a very strong business and I’m sure we’ll continue to have very strong manufacturer support.”