The MotoGP event, held around the end of October each year, at the SIC (Sepang International Circuit), has become an important event in many ways. This race is the second last of the season and points for the championship are now crucial.
The popularity of the event at Sepang has grown to such levels where all tickets for the 2016 and 2017 events were sold out 2 MONTHS prior to the event at any official SIC kiosk, at any location in Kuala Lumpur (KL).
Use either the MotoGP website or the SIC website for either early bird tickets, or tickets when they become available.
Do NOT expect to buy tickets within weeks of the event locally. They will be completely sold out.
The SIC, has from 2018, dropped F1 as a venue and are concentrating on bikes and possibly sportscar racing.
Motorcycles in any of these SE Asian countries are popular beyond belief. Economical and manoeuvrable transport and people of all ages ride, commute, deliver and work on and from bikes.
Hence, I believe, the SIC (Government owned) has decided to promote an event that is both beneficial and affordable to the masses. And it has proved very successful.
Kuala Lumpur is an exciting city. I’ve attended seven MotoGP events there and I have seen firsthand the vast rise in popularity and attendances of events at the SIC.
There are special buses that run from designated departure places from KL from 7.30/8.00am each of the 3 days and on the Sunday, make sure you’re on the earliest bus.
Usually it takes about 70 mins from KL to the Circuit, Sundays it may take up to 2½ hours.
Once at the circuit, there are shuttle buses (free) that ferry you up to the gate entrances.
The Circuit organisers have adjusted the start time of the Moto3 race to a later time to make sure all will be seated and ready for the lights to go out when the racing begins. They care.
The circuit is purpose built and both grandstands are fully covered and you either sit along pit straight or the back straight and the sound of the bikes is deafening and exciting.
Some years I wear ear buds but when I need that “charge” I go without.
The event is well managed. The circuit grounds are all paved within the complex and there are also under cover ground seating (no seats), on the huge grassy hill sections, at reduced cost.
The grandstand seating is worthwhile. These are Multi Level and comfortable and offer great viewing.
Food stalls are very affordable. They offer a wide variety of inexpensive choices.
Public toilets are clean and well maintained and are all easily accessible from any location.
Beer is available at specific locations and smoking areas are designated.
The Merchandising areas are very modern and offer a wide selection of any type of gear/accessory and cater for any enthusiast in a big way.
This year, 2017, they had Mick Doohan as a invited guest and Mick had interviews with 3 of the local Malaysian riders in the Moto2 class. There are always riders’ signing areas and designated promotion areas where sponsored riders attend at given times.
The crowd cheers and applauds local riders and VR46 is definitely the favourite.
Large wide screen TV’s are aligned along the straights which is expected these days.
The last turn leading onto the main straight is excellent.
I think Sepang is the cheapest ticket priced event of the entire calendar and with Thailand, next year 2018, also having an event, this area of SE Asia, has become very popular for MotoGP.
English is widely spoken and accommodation within KL is anywhere from extra high quality 5 star to 10 quid specials which I would not recommend.
From the airport to SENTRAL (main transport hub of KL), it’s a 45 mins journey for $15AUD, and they use special late model trains. From Sentral to anywhere in KL, you have about a dozen different rail lines, or the monorail, or buses if needed. Train, bus, monorail to the main city area is less than $1 AUD.
KL is very affordable, exciting and very modern.
It has rained nearly every year around the main race start time and that doesn’t seem to affect the excitement in any way.
Is Sepang worth the effort? Without a doubt, and the savings for attendance seating and accommodation costs, food, beer and entertainment are easily off set by the flight costs.
Next year, 2018, Thailand’s event is early in Oct. Sepang is always late Oct, so if you need an excuse for a month’s holiday in two faraway exotic locations, book early.
Fun is absolutely guaranteed.