Malaysian F1 organisers seek a different type of flood light for potential 2009 Malaysian GP. At night.
Singapore has seemingly started a trend of hosting Formula One night races. Now Malaysia is also investigating something similar for their 2009 race. According to the organiser Mokhzani Mahathir, 2008 could be the last time we see Malaysian sunlight as far as F1 goes. Mokhzani told a local Kualar-Lumpur paper New Straits Times that he is investigating the darker side of racing.
"Our target is to have the race at night next year and the same consultants who are doing the lighting for the Singapore grand prix are advising us on our lighting system," Mahathir said.
The main reason these two Asian countries are going dark on F1 racing is that Asia is several hours away from the main markets of the sport. Therefore most people who watch and support F1 have to wake up with the chickens in order to watch Asian legs of the races. Plus the novelty of racing under floodlights appears a sexy prospect to Bernie Ecclestone and company.
Malaysia would need a different lighting system to Singapore since the latter is not a permanent circuit. Several drivers have commented on driving under bright lights, a seriously potentially dangerous scenario considering that F1 cars do not have headlights of their own. Racers David Coulthard, Narain Karthikeyan, Alex Wurz and Mark Webber are among those who don’t have a problem with it, as long as the safety aspects are taken care of.