Changi Hub to turn into kart track

Changi Hub to turn into kart track
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SINGAPORE - A new international-standard karting track is being constructed on the same grounds that the Changi Motorsports Hub was to be built on.

Backed by private investors, the Singapore International Karting Circuit will become the second karting facility in Singapore, after the Kartright Speedway in Tuas.

Construction on the 41ha land will start soon and is targeted for completion by the second or third week of next month.

There have been no concrete plans to build a permanent racing circuit at Changi since the Singapore Sports Council ended its partnership with SG Changi - a consortium which won the bid in 2009 to build the original Changi Motorsports Hub - in May last year.

SG Changi had run into financial troubles, and construction had stopped since February 2011.

Mr Benjamin Tan, managing director of luxury-car broker AutoInc, is one of the stakeholders of the new Changi track.

He told My Paper: "Finally, we will have an internationally-recognised karting track for Singapore motorsports. This will definitely benefit the industry.

"For the past three years, we have been investing so much energy and resources in this sport. This will help the sport to grow as we offer local drivers and also international drivers the chance to explore their potential."

Indeed, AutoInc has been investing in motorsports, with its own stable of AutoInc Racing drivers and sponsoring the Singapore Karting Championships (SKC).

Another founder behind the project, Yuey Tan, said: "Motorsports is a science and we want to bring the science to Singaporeans in a bid to develop Singapore's next international race driver.

"Having this track allows people to understand the possibilities of full-time racing. We want to build the base of a motorsport pyramid, and that is where it all begins."

Yuey Tan is well-known in the local racing circle, as he races in the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia. He also runs the Havelock Speedway company, which is the promoter for the SKC. The karting track is planned to be just under 1.1km in length and of international standard.

It can be configured in six different ways, to the extent that two separate karting activities can be held on the track simultaneously.

For example, there can be race-kart practice on one part of the track, and rental-kart fun on the other.

Yuey Tan said that a Singapore Karting Academy will be set up to train youth from the age of eight.

Adopting the syllabus from the Yamaha racing school in Japan, drivers will be put through a structured programme, including regular races in a one-make Yamaha karting series.

The SKC, previously held at Kartright Speedway and at the Formula One Marina Bay street circuit, will be held at the new karting track once it is ready.

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