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Indian GP plans better event

2012-10-03 07:30

NEW DELHI, India -  - The success of the 2011 inaugural Indian Grand Prix has convinced organisers they can build both a long-lasting legacy within Formula One and break even on their substantial outlay "within five to seven years".

Jaypee Sports International raced against time to get the Buddh International Circuit ready for motor racing's most prestigious series in October 2011 and the event ran smoothly after some teething problems.

BREAKING EVEN

The Herman Tilke-designed 5.14km circuit on the outskirts of Delhi has also landed a four-year contract to host a round of the FIM Superbike World hampionship from 2013 which, the organisers hope, will boost the facility's financial viability. JPSI MD director and chief executive Sameer Gaur said: "The commercial proposition is such that you can't hope to recover it in a couple of years.

"You have to look at it long-term. Maybe five to seven years.”

Now that the foundations had been laid, the immediate job at hand, Gaur said, was to develop the circuit into an F1 village.

"The proposed underground metro service, scheduled for completion in 2015, will improve transport and there would be more restaurants and hotels. In the next couple of years we have to create an F1 village there, so that a fan can enjoy the race and the entertainment surrounding it," he said.

BETTER EXPERIENCE

World champion Sebastian Vettel triumphed in the inaugural race in the 2011 season and Gaur promised an even better experience in the second race on October 28, 2012. Gaur said: "God was very kind, we got a perfect start last year. Of course, some finishing touches were missing but everything is in order this year and you won't hear any complaints."

McLaren's Jenson Button finished second last year and was among those who tipped the circuit to become a firm favourite among the drivers.

After witnessing close to 100 000 fans cheering the GP staged around the undulating circuit, Gaur said there was no reason for anyone to doubt Button's verdict. "Jaypee Group is proud of what we have created and we would be disappointed if it does not happen. We have to make this circuit one of the most favourite tracks on the calendar. It won't happen overnight, it's a process.

"We had nothing but positive feedback from the drivers and teams after the race last year.

"Some 95 000 people turned up to cheer them on the race day. We hope fans will come again with the same spirit."

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Reuters