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F1 street demo at Putrajaya on Saturday

Posted: 31 Mar 2011 04:18 AM PDT

Thursday, March 31st, 2011 19:16:00

KUALA LUMPUR: Once again, Formula 1 (F1) is taking to the Malaysian streets.

This time around and for the first time since making its debut here in 1999, the thrilling showcase is in the heart of the country's administrative capital, Putrajaya.

Featuring Team Lotus and their Lotus T128 mean machine with drivers Jarno Trulli and Heiki Kovalainen, the `Team Lotus Live Demo' will be held on Saturday at the main street, in front of the Palace of Justice.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek and other Cabinet ministers are expected to be present there, Sepang International Circuit (SIC) chief executive officer Datuk Ahmad Razlan Ahmad Razali said in a statement today.

"This will be the first ever demo in Putrajaya and this fantastic event is aimed at building the F1 excitement for the fans and to tell them the 2011 Formula 1 Grand Prix is coming near," he said.

Jointly organised by Team Lotus, SIC and Putrajaya, the event is also in support of SIC's promotional programme for the 13th edition of the F1 Malaysia Grand Prix, which will be held at the Sepang circuit from April 8 to 10.

"The event is also a special way by the team to introduce themselves to Malaysians and to create more awareness for this Malaysian-initiated team," said Ahmad Razlan.

Adding spice to the inaugural F1 demonstration in Putrajaya would be a Malaysian Super Series (MSS) parade, drift demonstration, pocket bike and a supermotard stunt display and a special AirAsia A320 fly past.

Stage activities start from 10am and the main street shows would commence from 2pm. Entry is free.

Formula 1 street demo has always been a key feature of F1 activities with the inaugural demo held in 1999 by the Red Bull Sauber PETRONAS F1 Team, featuring Jean Alesi and Pedro Diniz and held around Jalan P. Ramlee in Kuala Lumpur.

Last year, fans were thrilled by the amazing skills of comeback king Michael Schumacher and his Mercedes GP PETRONAS team-mate Nico Rosberg around Jalan Binjai and the parking lots around Kuala Lumpur City Center (KLCC).

There was no F1 demo in 2006 and 2008.

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Inter boss Leonardo hurt us, says Abbiati

Posted: 30 Mar 2011 10:29 PM PDT

Thursday, March 31st, 2011 13:22:00

MILAN: AC Milan goalkeeper Christian Abbiati (pic) says Leonardo hurt him and his teammates when he took over as manager of bitter arch-rivals Inter Milan at the end of last year.

Brazilian Leonardo parted ways with Milan following the 2009-2010 season after leading the Rossoneri to a thirdplace finish in Serie A.

However, he returned to management this season when he replaced Spaniard Rafael Benitez as Inter tactician on Christmas Eve.

Since then the 41-year-old has stabilised Inter, who were in a wretched run of form under Benitez, having now revived their chances of successfully defending both the Serie A and the Champions League titles they won last season.

However, Abbiati is not too pleased with Leonardo's switching of allegiance and told Sky Italia: "The fact that when he left he made us understand that he wouldn't be coaching the following year left me perplexed.

"I think his passage to Inter disappointed many Milan fans. Some of my teammates were also hurt by the decision."

Milan and Inter confront each other in Derby della Madonnina at San Siro this weekend with just two points separating the sides at the top of the standings.

Inter midfielder Dejan Stankovic believes they should be considered favourites to win this massive contest at San Siro.

Stankovic says Inter were a little disappointed that they could not be level on points with Milan going into the match, further adding to the intrigue of the clash.

"We have worked hard gather as many points as possible and close the gap," he said.

"We wanted to be level on points going into the match, but I can say that we are very close to them.

"Now we play another game that isn't impossible to win. We are aware of what is needed to win.

"Having a look at both teams' recent form, we are the favourites, but I have played in the Belgrade, Roma and Milan derbies and I know that the favourites do not automatically win. Actually, the opposite happens quite often."

Meanwhile, Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis hopes to see a highquality derby.

For the record, Napoli are third behind Inter in the table with a point less.

And De Laurentiis is not of the same belief as his star striker Edinson Cavani, who hopes Inter can claim maximum points.

"Everyone has a choice as to who they wish to support. What I will want to see is a good match," said the flm producer.

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