Motors, music, money and all in the family at Sepang grand prix circuit

A tale of music, money (US$15m), more money (US$60m), less money (RM60 tickets) and motor-racing. And it will definitely Rain (more money) at their parade.

The flagging fortunes of Sepang motor-racing circuit, where attendances have been dropping since 2006, have led to the track’s chief executive Razlan Razali flogging the idea of renovations (US60mil) and a night grand prix race (US15mil).

Both he and his cousin, the Sepang circuit chairman billionaire Mokhzani Mahathir, have been saying this for months. Now with just a month to go to the next grand prix, they are trying to push up attendances with cut-rate ticket sales.

There will also be an open-air concert by South Korean pop star, Rain. It just so happens that Razlan and his brother and sister own a music promotion and event management company.

Last month Razlan told AFP that he believed Sepang was “losing its lustre”. In that interview, he tried to flog the idea of a night race, following Singapore and Dubai, because, he said, the high daytime Sepang kept the crowds away. (Attendances: 140,000 in 2006; 125,000 in 2009; and 97,000 last year.)

Could it also be that Malaysians are losing interest in motor sport?

Mokhzani said on Tuesday there might be more interest this year because three local motor-racing teams would be involved. He also said ticket prices had been slashed to RM60 for the full weekend. (It used to be RM360.)

He also chimed in again with the idea of night racing. Of course more money must be spent on improving the facilities. How much? US15mil

Last year, Razlan and Mokhzani had been both going on about the “lost lustre”, and the need to catch up with Dubai, and plug leaky roofs, etc. (About RM180mil (US$60mil) needed.)

An interesting question not discussed is: why does Malaysia, which raises hardly a pimple in international motor sales, have three motor-racing teams, one by Petronas, another by Proton, and the third by Air Asia, when much wealthier motor-producing countries produce none?

These and other obvious interesting questions come to mind when looking at some pictures that came in the mail, of an invoice sent to Sepang circuit from a music promotion and event management company.

IMAGES OF INVOICE: Click on the page numbers below

It raises one obvious question: is it proper for the Sepang CEO to pay his own private company for music promotional activities?
The accompanying letter asked some other obvious questions:

from Eagle Master
by email

Is Najib serious on fighting corruptions? Many Malaysians would have doubts about it!! Especially if it involves Mahathir’s cronies or more so his relatives. The Sepang track CEO (nephew), newly appointed Pahang Datok, Razlan Razali is having uninterrupted joyride with his position. Fully protected by his billionaire-Forbes-listed-cousin Mokhzani Mahathir (3rd richest Malay in the country) as the Chairman of Sepang track, Razlan is having fun (and funds too), giving away goodies to blood brothers and friends. He even paid to his own company by using public’s taxpayer money at the Sepang track. Proudly announcing new concert project for third year running on Facebook, he’s already imagining tonnes of dough to be bulldozed into his bank account.

He’s also been whining about sorry state of the track while the money pumped in by the BN government year in year out go straight to his pocket. Hahaha clever dude! In an interview recently with AFP he said he has received no reply after petitioning the government to fund a major overhaul at a cost of 180 million ringgit (59 million dollars). In many countries, it could even build a brand new track. The news piece beamed worldwide, has become a major shame to Malaysians who always trying to blame someone (neighbour Singapore’s Night F1) when something not coming our way. He’s also blaming all factors but himself on the plunging of F1 tickets sales this April. Lustre maybe lost but it may not be the case afterall as RM180 million could be rolling down to who you know who!!

Click on the page numbers below to view the images