Malaysia’s tourism minister says country to host last F1 race in 2018

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will stop hosting the Formula One (F1) Grand Prix race after its contract ends in 2018. Confirming this, Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul...

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will stop hosting the Formula One (F1) Grand Prix race after its contract ends in 2018.

Confirming this, Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul Aziz said this was because F1 had become too expensive to host and was no longer attractive.

“All over the world, even in Singapore, the attendance (for F1 races) has gone down.

“I don’t think there is anywhere in the world the number of spectators for F1 has increased.

“So, I think that for long-term interest, it is the right thing to do,” Nazri told reporters at the Parliament lobby Monday.

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He said Malaysia spends about RM300mil a year to organise the F1 race but the returns have not been up to par.

He also said that Malaysia has not produced enough F1 drivers in all the years it has hosted the race.

However, Nazri said the Motorcycle Grand Prix (MotoGP) has seen an increase in followers.

Last month, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said Malaysia was considering halting the annual F1 race after its contract ends in 2018 due to declining ticket sales and TV viewership.

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