There are two different stories by two top bloggers on Petronas' decision to sponsor Mercedes instead of Lotus F1. I shall let you read and judge on your own.
Tun Dr Mahathir has his personal opinion on this, so read : FI team investment pays 100 times dividend, says Dr M
Hmm. If we are among the darkhorses in the F1 races, then certainly Malaysians can lift their heads and be proud.
The "ang-moh" or "orang putih" will be curious to know about the country called Malaysia which is more popularly described as "the country between Thailand and Singapore".
Well, don't laugh or fume and don't say that is not true. Some still don't know Malaysia, some heard of Malaysia but unsure where it is.
In fact, I would say not many people know that Sabah and Sarawak are part of Malaysia as well. Thus, it might be a good idea to be involved in international sports that will consistently promote Malaysia.
But will that be enough to make people Buy Malaysian Products or Visit Malaysia ? Have we ever thought,
- what if we cannot qualify for races during the qualifying sessions ?
- what if we qualified but end up fighting NOT TO BE LAST ?
- what if we qualified but we end up NOT FINISHING RACES ?
That will certainly mean that we will lose the support of Malaysians. I predict millions of Malaysians will turn on their TVs to watch the Lotus 1Malaysia F1 team perform in Bahrain (1st race).
But if we lose or fail somewhere before the race or in the race, things will go awry and downhill.
Malaysians will lose their patience and politicians as well as bloggers will be out for the heads of the businessmen who borrowed the 1Malaysia theme from Najib to boost their F1 business.
Whatever the results of the Lotus F1 team, I personally think that Air Asia won't lose as they will still be a well known airline globally.
In fact, Air Asia will find routes to various countries in the world just through F1. Governments and Airports worldwide will know AirAsia and they will be granted landing rights.
Lotus ? Their business will be dented and people will lose confidence in the car. Those who buy sports cars are those whom are proud of their speedy cars.
But will one really buy a Sports Car that loses in F1 races ? Rich or spoilt folks might shy away from buying a "loser" sports car, although the effect will not be extensive.
I expect that Malaysia Airlines will suffer at the expense of AirAsia's successes. Mind you, Malaysian Government owns a large stake in Malaysia Airlines.
More importantly, win or lose, no one can say for sure if people will flock to Malaysia for Invest Malaysia or Visit Malaysia.
I don't want to see another round of "Government paid, someone else gained".
I hope and I pray that the net winners in the end are Proton, Lotus and Malaysians. So much money is invested and such high stakes "gamble" must bring successes.
Also, Lotus F1 must be well prepared since Petronas had decided to sponsor a "potential winner" in Mercedes instead of gambling their petrodollars in the hands of the untested Lotus F1.
Lotus F1 is surprised that Petronas refuse to sponsor them actually. So, I am sitting here wondering how Lotus F1 will fund their operations and races next year.
F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone once mentioned that an F1 team requires at least US$300mil to fully participate in all the 17 or 18 races per F1 season.
But 1Malaysia Racing Team Sdn Bhd (1MRT) estimated that they will spend RM 308 million only for the whole year. 1MRT is smarter than Bernie Ecclestone ?