Grapevine: Singapore Denies Formula One Bid

Singapore's motorsport chiefs have moved to play down recent speculation that they are bidding to grab a spot on the Formula One calendar - although they have drawn short of ruling out the possibility completely

Grapevine: Singapore Denies Formula One Bid

A report in the Electric New Paper earlier this month claimed that Singapore's Tourism Board had given the green light to the creation of a circuit through the capital city - even though the funding for the event had not been finalised.

But speaking to Singapore's Today newspaper at the weekend, the boss of the Singapore Motorsports Association (SMSA) said that he had never discussed F1 with the STB and believed that such an event would not necessarily be economically viable.

"I'm so surprised by all these stories," said Matthew Lee. "The last time I met STB officials was in 2003 for the Asian Supercross motorbike championship at Suntec City. As it was an international event, we had to work with STB to promote it. But we have never discussed anything relating to Formula One.

"People have asked me if Singapore could host a Formula One race. My answer is, sure, of course we can. We can build a street circuit or a permanent circuit, but whether this would be allowed is another matter.

"Singapore is a small country and hosting a Formula One race is not cheap. So I am not too sure if it would be in Singapore's interest to do so."

Despite Lee's comments however, Singapore's Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew admitted on Monday that the country did make a mistake in not building a Formula One track.

"My colleagues and I said: 'Oh, It's bad. It'll teach our drivers to be reckless. Better not,'" he said during a business dinner. "But that was a stupid decision because everybody wants to be on F1 and they put their names on it and millions of eyes are watching F1."

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