Formula One to come to Delhi, India
F1 2009 season may see Formula One cars on Rajpath-India Gate-Lutyen's Delhi circuit in New Delhi, India.
15 May, 2007
BY OUR AUTOMOBILE CORRESPONDENT
Singapore has just bagged what might potentially become the first night race for Formula One - but India's chances of getting its own F1 race is getting closer too. The gears have been turning for a while inside Bernie Ecclestone's head, ably wound up by Vijay Mallya of Kingfisher - and suddenly the buzz around the potential of New Delhi as a Formula One venue has intensified.
The Formula One management bossman’s statement that he was ‘personally enthusiastic’ about having a round of the F1 championship in India in the near future has come as sweet music to India’s Formula One racing fans. Okay, agreed that most of them believe Michael Schumacher and Ferrari to be what it is all about, and Vijay Mallya is a sponsor of the Toyota F1 Racing team - but what the hell, it is coming here, and that is what matters.
There is increasing likelihood that Formula One may make its debut in India in 2009.
Bringing F1 to India is on the
priority list for many - some past F1
enthusiasts, like Chandrababu Naidu
are are looking right now at the right
formula to get back into power in
Hyderabad first and thus can't focus
much on F1. But there are others. Like
Vijay Mallya, the United Breweries
group chief, who had said that he
would push for a racing track in the
national capital, New Delhi.
In an ideal scenario, there should at least be one local Formula One driver when F1 lands in Dilli. Bernie Ecclestone has said that Chennai kid Karun Chandhok is seen as a talented driver who stands a to be the second Indian to get an F1 seat. Narain Karthikeyan was the first Indian to compete in Forumla 1 in 2005. He created a record as the first one, but definitely not as the one who did a great battle - saddled as he was with a paid seat on one of the backmarker Jordan cars. Here is to hoping that Chandok does get into Formula One, and hopefully in one of the cars that battle it out at least right behind the top-rung F1 teams.
According to reports, the FMSCI is
already working on a couple of model
circuits and the idea is to position
Delhi as an F1 street circuit like
Monaco. Among the many proposals, one
of the most popular ideas has the F1
track starting from Rajpath, going all
the way to the India Gate roundabout,
curves into the two parallel roads
that go around Rajpath, zooms in front
of Vigyan Bhavan and behind Meridien
Hotel and back to end the race at
Rajpath. Security was one concern, but
considering that this is already a
high security area which is cordoned
off during Independence day and
Republic Day celebrations, it should
not be too difficult to seal off the
area and allow only legitimate
visitors in during the F1 race
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