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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Malaysia says no to the lights

Hot on the heels of Singapore's successful first night race, F1 Ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone is eager for other Far East races to follow suit.

But organizers in Malaysia have said no, instead settling on a late afternoon compromise.

Ecclestone hopes to make the Eastern Rim races more profitable for television by staging them at convenient times for European viewers, but Malaysia has balked at the cost of lighting up the circuit, instead following Australia's lead by starting later.

"It will still be daylight and about 7pm when the new race finishes and for fans in Europe and Britain, it would be about 10am," Sepang chairman Datuk Mokhzani Mahathir is quoted by the Malaysian Star. "We are not going to lose out. The
lighting costs quite a bit and this is an effort to keep the cost of F1 in Malaysia down, and Bernie has agreed."

Australian GP chief executive Drew Ward has hinted Singapore's success could result in a rethink of the event's stance on night racing, but not before the current contract expires in 2015.

It is also believed the Japanese Grand Prix is Ecclestone's next target for night racing.

Win a cool million

One of the first proposals of the Formula One Teams Association is to scrap Friday practice for a $1m "show race" to bolster interest in Friday's action, sources report.

Sounds like Vince McMahon's XFL. And Luca thinks Singapore was a circus?

Russia starts construction on F1 standard circuit

F1-Live reports stories coming out of Russia have Hans Geist hard at work on a $215m Hermann Tilke designed track outside of Moscow, in the town of Volokolamsk.

Geist was in charge of the F1 projects in Austria and Bahrain.

The course is aiming to open in 2010, with hopes of getting MotoGP and DTM events.

Kimi is fastest

Proving there is more to winning than speed, Kimi Raikkonen is the fastest man in F1.

Raikkonen set his tenth fastest lap in Singapore, tying the record he shares with Michael Schumacher.

This statistic is at odds with his qualifying performance, however, as Crash.net points out.

Top ten average qualifying positions
in 2008 up to and including
Singapore Grand Prix:
  1. Felipe Massa 2.8
  2. Lewis Hamilton 3.2
  3. Heikki Kovalainen 3.8
  4. Kimi Raikkonen 4.8
  5. Robert Kubica 5.2
  6. Fernando Alonso 7.6
  7. Jarno Trulli 8.2
  8. Mark Webber 8.6
  9. Nick Heidfeld 8.7
  10. Timo Glock 10.9
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