Thailand gets ready for the 2013 MXGP
By Marionna Leiva | 08 Nov 2012
During the 2012 season, Mr. Kraitos Wongsawan, promoter of the Thai Grand Prix, visited several MXGP in order to provide the best facilities and services possible during the MXGP of Thailand, which will take place in Si Racha during the 10th March weekend. Mr. Wongsawan did not only visit the MXGP of Brazil to see how an overseas event is organized, but he also attended two of the best events of the 2012 season, the MXGP Festival at Matterley Basin, Great Britain, and the Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations, which took place in Lommel, Belgium.
During one of his visits, we had the opportunity to sit down with Mr. Wongsawan and he explained us how the preparations for the MXGP of Thailand are going and how the Thai community is living the previous months of the so expected event in the country.
Question: Your first visit this year to the FIM Motocross World Championship was in Beto Carrero in Brazil because you wanted to see how an overseas organizer carry out an MXGP, but you had a strong will to come to an event in Europe, what was the main reason for you to come to a Grand Prix like the one in Great Britain?
Mr. Kraitos Wongsawan: We have to do loads of preparations for the Thai Grand Prix because both Youthstream and FIM standards are very high and demanding and we want to have the approval from both parties. I wanted to see different events in different parts of the world in order to see how different the preparations are, and I chose Matterley Basin for the strong tradition of motocross in the UK.
Q: Which facilities from Matterley Basin will be able to find in Thailand?
KW: One thing which will be very similar is the fair; we are going to have a Thai GP fair, maybe not that elegant, but it will be very Thai. At the moment I cannot reveal any more secrets …
Q: During the Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations, you had a big stand in the paddock promoting Thailand and the MXGP, what were the reactions of the people who visited the Thai stand at the MXoN?
KW: I was definitely surprised when some of MXoN fans were wearing Thai T-shirt and saying “Sawasdee krub” (Hello in Thai), and with more surprise when some of the fans had already booked the air-ticket to Thailand 6-7 months before the event, they were very very friendly and really look forward to coming to ThaiMXGP, I must thank all the MXGP fans for the positive feedback towards our first Grand Prix.
Q: How are the preparations going in Si Racha and how is the media and people reacting towards the event?
KW: The people in Thailand are getting more and more excited every day about the Grand Prix, as we are constantly generating content on Facebook and the Thai people are also really interested in Monster Energy, even though it is not distributed in the country.
The track is located near an industrial area, so we have many facilities already available in the area, such as optic fiver. However, we have other big challenges that I’m sure will overcome with no major problems.
Greg Atkins has visited the area several times to make sure the track will be ready on time following all the Youthstream and FIM requirements, and we are building a road leading the racetrack to make sure that the accesses to the event are good for everybody.
Q: How are the Thai riders facing the MXGP in their home country?
KW: The Thai riders need to work out really hard to have promising careers in motocross, because we have been focused in Supercross too long. In the 1990s we still had some motocross races, but they started disappearing and everybody was practicing Supercross instead, but now the interest has grown again in motocross. At the moment, the Thai riders can jump, but when then have to do it in full speed, they are not able to do it yet, so this is where they have to work hard. One more important thing, we must thank Jan Postema who devoted so much for Thai riders to improve their riding skills and strengthen their fitness training.
(The MX Riders who represented Thailand at the 2012 MXoN)
Q: What are the main reasons that moved you to organize an MXGP in Thailand?
KW: There are five main reasons of why we want to organize an MXGP in Thailand; first of all, we want to bring a major event in our country, secondly we want to promote and develop Thai riders, thirdly we want to help developing the motorcycling market in Thailand, we also want to promote Thailand as a tourist destination and finally we do it also for pure entertainment.
Q: How successful you think the event is going to be in terms of crowd attendance?
KW: In order to have a great success we need the support of all the National and International media to spread the news around the globe. The tickets to come the Grand Prix will be the cheapest in the calendar, as they will cost around 30 euros, but we want to have as many people as possible from outside Thailand, and our expectations is to have around 30000 spectators during the weekend.
Q: What about the Thai people, do you think they will come to the MXGP of Thailand?
KW: So far, so good; we have received very positive feedback from the fans and a lot of people have already started saving money to attend the event.
The online tickets will be available in December 2012 on www.thaiticketmajor.com
and to get all the information you need to travel to Thailand for the second MXGP of the season, visit the official site www.ThaiMXGP.com
or follow all the preparations on their Facebook Page on www.facebook.com/ThailandMotocrossGP
Photo: Mr. Kraitos Wongsawan, MXGP Thailand Organizer
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