New kart circuit able to host int'l races

The opening of the new KF1 Karting Circuit at the Singapore Turf Club in Kranji will offer motor- sports enthusiasts more than just variety in racing venues.

Along with Kartright Speedway in Upper Jurong Road, Singapore has two dedicated karting circuits.

More crucially, the KF1 circuit can play host to international races from around the world, thus allowing karting enthusiasts here to be a part of top-level competitions.

Costing $2 million to build over a three-month period, it has a 960m-long track with a minimum track width of 7m, designed by renowned Formula One track architect Hermann Tilke.

It meets the requirement set by the CIK, the karting commission of the International Automobile Federation (FIA), to host international races.

For a karting track to obtain a Grade C licence for international races, it must be at least 800m long. It will, however, not be able to host the CIK-FIA World Championships, which require a Grade A licence.

Kartright Speedway, which hosted the Asian Karting Open Championship last November, has a 750m-long track, giving it a CIK-FIA Asia Zone Grade C licence that permits only regional-level races to be held.

Singapore Motor Sports Association vice-president (karting sport) Kenneth Wong said that the new track has already been endorsed for national-level events.

"The track is very good, maybe even the best in Singapore due to its design, which has a nice combination of sharp turns and straights to test a driver's technical ability and a kart's engine power," said the 36-year-old.

Richard Tan, managing director of Arina International Holding, which operates KF1 Karting Circuit, said that he is in talks with race promoters and the Singapore Tourism Board about hosting an international race in April.

"We've had big sporting events like the WTA Finals and Formula One Singapore Grand Prix races here, so why not an international race for karting?" quipped Tan, who has spent over $1.5 million promoting the sport and the KF1 race series in the last three years.

The track is open to the public, with prices starting from $18, while there are also limited membership packages available for sign-ups starting at $1,800.

This article was first published on November 9, 2014.
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