Sepang International Circuit to close for track resurfacing

© AP

The Sepang International Circuit will close for three months next year to allow track resurfacing to take place ahead of the Malaysian Grand Prix in October.

For 2016, the circuit’s annual Formula 1 race has been shifted to a fall slot after traditionally being the second round of the season since 2001.

Officials at Sepang have taken the opportunity to close the track and complete some needed redevelopment ahead of the grand prix to ensure it remains up to FIA and FIM standards.

“The last five years have seen an average 98 percent usage of the track’s availability throughout the year, from large international events all the way to private bookings,” CEO Dato Razlan Razali said.

“These events have taken the circuit to a whole new level of recognition, and in tandem with this, it is a must for SIC to continue providing the best experience and top levels of safety for all track users.

“Additionally, our efforts to develop motorsports in Malaysia further underline the need to maintain a top international class circuit in the country. We regret causing disappointment and inconvenience due to the closure of the circuit, and we thank all track users for their understanding.

“Like all facilities and especially circuits, maintenance works is a priority, and the resurfacing and upgrading works is necessary to ensure the continued availability of a track of the highest quality in Malaysia.”

Redevelopment works will take place from Feb. 15 to May 8. The Malaysian Grand Prix is due to take place on Oct. 2, and will be followed by the MotoGP race on Oct. 30.