FOLLOWING the successful staging of the newly concluded season, organisers of the FIA Formula 4 Southeast Asia Championship are in the midst of launching the new season with India added as a new battleground for the 2018 edition.

The new season is expected to be even more challenging and competitive with the race promoters planning to have at least eight series of races in Sepang (Malaysia) and Buriram (Thailand).

Adding to the excitement and as part of its expansion plan, the promoters have also listed India as one of the circuit which will host the championship.

Race promoter Peter Thompson expressed satisfaction over the successful and smooth organisation of the 2017-2018 season, saying that the challenge now is to have more riders from outside the region to be part of the event to add more competition to the series.

“I’m extremely delighted with the ways things have gone over the last eight months since the opening rounds in Sepang in September last year. We started off with a clear mission to develop the sports and race in a relevant and effective way in this region. Of course, it doesn’t stop here…we’ll continue to strive even harder to bring up the championship to higher levels as well as making it into one of the premier F4 event globally,” said Peter.

FIA, as the sports’ world governing body, introduced F4 as a launchpad to help aspiring and young drivers to soar to greater heights and reach the pinnacle of the sports.  With the backing of main sponsor PETRON, the upcoming 2018 season is expected to be even more intense with more young drivers expected to enroll for the Championship.

The new season is slated to take off in July with Sepang International Circuit (SIC) hosting two consecutive races from 7-8 July and 13-15 July. SIC will also host the final two races of the Championship from 23-25 November and 1-2 December 2018.

“We have to take into consideration the cost factor whereby drivers will be able to reduce their expenses by having the qualifying and races back to back at the same circuit before flying off to the next destination.

For the first time, India will be included and is expected to host the September leg before proceeding to Thailand (Buriram) in October, said Thompson.

The promoters are also intensifying efforts in promoting and hyping up the race globally through various outreach and strategic media programmes such as a series of episodes on international television channels including ESPN and Fox in various territories.

“This include having more live streaming via our official social media platforms to help extend our reach to even larger market with a target of at least 150 million global viewers,” he said, adding that the organisers have set a target of at least 18 drivers in their list for the new 2018 season.

Formula 4 SEA is the Asian regional championship of the FIA F4 single-seater race format which is licensed to race in Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, India, Vietnam, Cambodia and Taiwan.

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