Located in Pasir
Gudang is Johor’s sole purpose built racing circuit.
The Johor circuit was first built in 1986 and has been the
centre piece for motorsport events in the state having held
local, regional as well as world championship race events
over the years. In 1998 the worlds eyes were on Johor when
it held the 1998 Malaysian round of the Grand Prix motorcycle
championship, where Mick Doohan went on to take the main
In 1999, when Sepang F1 circuit came into
existence, Johor circuit’s hey day as a prime venue
was already on the decline, its facilities by then were
already getting old and worn out.
The brand new Sepang F1 track was now snagging all the limelight,
holding high profile racing events and leaving Johor by
By 2010, Johor was catering to more grass root events such
as driver training programs, test days and track days. There
was even a couple of successful Singapore organised bicycle
races held at the circuit!
In 2015, to the shock of many, Johor circuit’s
gates closed. The official announcement given was that the
facility was to undergo a major revamp and upgrading works.
Unfortunately up until today, the circuits gates have remained
closed. The only major new development occurring in February
2020, when the paddock buildings and grandstand structures
were demolished, leaving only the circuits tall viewing
tower and main track intact.
The Johor circuit in my
opinion is arguably one of the finest technical circuits
in the country, if not the region and harks back to traditional
European circuits of old. But be under no illusions, tracks
like this are inherently dangerous and Johor was known for
being uncompromising, lacking adequate gravel traps and
run off areas at key sections.
For myself, having gone and seen many race
events in the 1980's and 1990’s, as well as having
driven trackdays there, the Johor circuit holds a special
place with me and no doubt many other motorsport loving
Malaysian’s out there.
Hopefully one day the old circuit will reopen
its doors again afresh, allowing the old and new generation
of motorsports fans to experience a truly classic racetrack.