Bangkok announcement - Photo Credit: Race Of Champions

The announcement took place in the unusual venue of the Monaco harbour - Photo Credit: Race Of Champions

The 2012 Race Of Champions will take place in Bangkok, it was announced on Friday.

The 25th edition of the annual end-of-season competition will be held in December at the Rajamangala Stadium, which is home to Thailand's national football matches. Exact dates are to be announced.

The event had been hosted by Dusseldorf's ESPRIT Arena in Germany for the past two seasons, with 2012 marking its second visit to Asia after the 2009 contest took place at the Olympic Stadium in Beijing, China.

“We have again been swamped with offers from first-rate venues all over the world but we couldn't think of a better place to celebrate our 25th anniversary than Thailand,” said ROC organiser Fredrik Johnsson.

“Following our visit to Beijing's 'Bird's Nest' Olympic Stadium in 2009 this is only the second time the event has been held outside Europe. Now we can look forward to seeing some of the best drivers in the world fighting it out at ROC in Bangkok.”

Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism and Sports, Chumpol Silapa-archa said: “We are thrilled that the Race Of Champions is coming to Thailand. This race will be a perfect opportunity for Thais to see some of the world's greatest drivers and represents another step by the government in its efforts to promote racing and automotive sports in the Kingdom. We aim to bring Formula One to Thailand as well.”

Governor of the Sports Authority of Thailand, Khun Kanokphand Chulakasem added: “The Race Of Champions has a prestigious place on the racing calendar and we are delighted to have won the right to play host in 2012. We are committed to making this race one of the best races ever and look forward to welcoming driving legends and fans from around the world to Thailand.”

Also amongst the partners for the event are Red Bull (which originated from Thailand), Siam Winery and Singha Corporation.

“We are excited that Thailand will play host to the 25th Race Of Champions,” said Red Bull UK Chairman Chalerm Yoovidhya, who also heads up Siam Winery. “The Thais are renowned for their hospitality and we will stage an amazing race that will showcase the best that Thailand has to offer. Siam Winery is proud to be a principal sponsor of this race.”

Santi Bhirombhakdi, President of the Singha Corporation added: “Singha is delighted to once again partner Red Bull and Siam Winery in supporting a racing event of this calibre. We are thrilled that the Race Of Champions will be held in Thailand and excited about what this event means for motor sports in the country.”