Sri Lanka Automobile Sports (SLAS), the governing body for motorsports in Sri Lanka has once again stepped in to give the local motorsports community a much-needed boost with the announcement of the NIPPON PAINT KATUKURUNDA SPEED 2022 race meet to be held on the 3rd and 4th of December. This event, a highly-anticipated follow-up to the successful Katukurunda race meet organized by SLAS in December 2021, will see 129 competitors take to the starting grid across 10 categories, and 12 races. Organized by the 10 member clubs of SLAS, the event is backed by Nippon Paint, who are showing their support for motorsport in Sri Lanka with a significant investment in the meet, as well as a team of competing drivers headed by brand ambassador and SL GT front runner Ushan Perera.
Nemantha Abeysinhe, General Manager, Nippon Paints said “We are extremely pleased to be the title sponsor of the Nippon Paint Katukurunda Speed 2022 races and to witness an exciting return to national motorsport. Nippon Paint is proud to partner with an event of this nature to highlight our world-class paints while also connecting with a new generation of racing fans. We all look forward to a great weekend of on-track action on the 3rd and 4th of December.”
The meet is to be conducted exclusively for cars, and while limited spectator tickets are being sold, the event will be live-streamed in high-definition on YouTube and Facebook and aired live on PEO TV. Broadcast partner Motor Sports Network once again comes on board with a high-quality live production in addition to race management support.
In a historic first for motorsport in Sri Lanka, SLAS is partnering with the INDIRA CANCER TRUST to highlight the important work they do in early detection, pallative care and other aspects of cancer treatment and patient care. SLAS will also contribute one million rupees from the race proceedings and will give publicity to the Indria cancer trust. Dr. Lanka Jayasuriya Dissanayake, Chairperson & Trustee of the Indira Cancer Trust said, “We are indeed thankful to the SLAS President and council for uniting motorsports fans, teams, sponsors, and drivers to direct their collective generosity towards the fight against cancer. This commitment will promote early detection and prevention initiatives and efforts to help raise awareness and support of fighting all types of cancer especially breast and childhood cancers.”
SLAS President Ashhar Hameem said “We are once again excited to bring all 10 member clubs together to put on an event for the drivers. We are especially thankful to Nippon Paints and our other sponsors for their support, and are heartened to see such a bumper entry list. We know the drivers will once again put on a great show and hope this meet can lead to a full calendar of events in 2023. Motorsport is the second most-watched spectator sport in the country after cricket, with a massive ecosystem of workshops, mechanics, engineers, suppliers all dependent on races being conducted, so we have all worked hard to put this event together under trying circumstances.
SLAS and its member clubs are hopeful that improved domestic conditions will see a return of a full calendar of racing for the first time since 2018. With several new developments for motorsports planned, the Association will be working closely with the relevant ministries and other stakeholders to announce plans in the near future.
With practice and qualifying rounds scheduled for the 3rd of December, the live coverage of the meet (on both PEO TV and via media partner Motor Sport Network’s YouTube channel) will commence at 8 AM on the 4th. All of the fan-favourite classes will see action with star drivers such as Ashan Silva, Ushan Perera and Darin Weerasinghe expected to battle it out in the SL GT class, while the SL H Honda class will see the usual contenders Irfan Fuard, Randika Niroshan, Zaakir Wahab and Shehara De Silva vying for victory.
Other Sponsors, Co-Sponsor SLT-Mobitel, Supporting Sponsrs – Exide, Wurth Lanka, Pink Auto Shop, Lockheed, DuLuck, Freelan, Recovery Partner How To Drive, Printing Partner Ranpath Creations, Digital Partner Tudo.LK, QR Partner GlenTech and media partner, Motor Sports Network.