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Published September 29th 2017
Practice Day on 29 September 2017. Photo source: Sepang International Circuit
Here are top 5 facts about Sepang International Circuit:
1. The First Modern Circuit in South East Asia to Host F1 Race
The inauguration of Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang International Circuit was held in 1999. The state-of-the-art circuit was officially opened on March 9, 1999 by former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. It was constructed on a 260-hectare former palm oil plantation.
Sebastian Vettel (center) sits between Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen. Photo courtesy of Sepang International Circuit
2. No man has won more Malaysian Grands Prix than Sebastian Vettel The German driver won the race in 2010, 2011, 2013, and 2015. No one would ever win more than him as the last 2017 FORMULA 1 PETRONAS MALAYSIA GRAND PRIX ends in 2017.
3. Believe It or Not Singapore's Thomson Road Circuit is It's Predecessor FIA-sanctioned racing in Malaysia has existed since the 1960s, when Singapore was then part of the Federation of Malaysia between 1963 and 1965. The original Formula Two Grand Prix was held on the Thomson Road Circuit in Singapore from 1962 to 1965. It is widely regarded as an earlier precedence of the Malaysian Grand Prix.
Hermann Tilke. Photo source: David Blake
4. It is the First F1 Track Designed by Hermann Tilke The circuit was the first F1 track designed by renowned circuit architect Hermann Tilke of Tilke Engineering in Aachen, Germany. He is an amateur racing driver. It has 56 laps with 5.543KM circuit length and 310.408KM race distance.
The circuit has an interesting mix of medium and high-speed corners. The first and third sectors of the lap feature long straights and hairpin bends, while sector two has some medium and high-speed corners. To date, the circuit remains one of the hardest track.
5. Malaysia's Very Own F1 Driver Had Competed in This Circuit Alexander Charles Yoong Loong, became the first Malaysian to race in F1. He raced for Minardi in 2001 and 2002. He had Fernando Alonso as his teammate in 2001 and Mark Webber in 2002.
At his home race in Malaysia, Alex Yoong was forced to retire after a collision with Eddie Irvine.