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Sepang races for Asian expatriates
Opportunity for agents to package Malaysian F1 Grand Prix
Laura Lee, Langkawi

Laura Lee, Langkawi  
(24th Jan 2005)

SEPANG International Circuit (SIC) has restrategised its marketing post-tsunami and is focusing on wooing Asian expatriates to the Malaysian Formula One (F1) Grand Prix Championship 2005 as the date for its three-day event draws near.

General manager, Mr Ahmad Mustafa, said Travex would be the right platform for SIC to promote its event, which begins on March 18. It is also a good opportunity to show overseas buyers that Malaysia suffered only minimal impact from the tsunami.

SIC is organising a go-kart challenge at this ATF to create a different activity besides enabling delegates to get a feel of what it is like on the race tracks during the championship race.

It will go on a roadshow to Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore over the next two months. Its last roadshows to these countries were conducted late last year. In Thailand, SIC will be working with the travel agents to promote ticket sales from Phuket and new target areas, namely Pattaya and Samui.

Overall, SIC works with more than 70 major travel agents from the UK, Europe, South Africa, Australia and Asia who are paid a commission based on ticket sales.

Plans are afoot to work with Malaysia Airlines and Air Asia to provide better packaging for the event. He said SIC would have a briefing with corporate leaders and CEOs, one of its main target markets, on February 3, to keep them abreast of this year's preparation before the launch of its event on February 12.

“The tickets for the F1 event in Malaysia are among the cheapest in the region with prices starting from RM100 (US$27) for the hillstand to RM1,750 for the Diamond tickets in the upper tier of the mall area.”

Mr Ahmad said 95 per cent of its Diamond tickets had been snapped up. As at press time, more than 10,000 tickets for the event have been sold. Some 60 per cent of the ticket sales is expected to come in at the last minute.

He said one incentive SIC would offer this year was providing a bus for those who bought 50 tickets or more.

This year's event incorporates the Formula BMW Asia Championship, Formula Ma-laysia and the Porsche Carrera Cup as its support races. For the first time, there will also be a concert immediately after featuring top international and local artistes.

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