RUSSIAN GP TO GO AHEAD The Russian GP in Sochi is still set for October 2014. Will it be ready in time to host an F1 race? Image: AFP
LONDON, England - The Russian Formula 1 GP in Sochi remains on track for an October 2014 debut despite concern raised by the crisis in Ukraine.
Race promoter, Sergey Vorobyev,said: "I have no doubts the race will go ahead. Construction is being done at a good pace we have the operational and sporting preparations also being done very extensively.
"There is no doubt from any point of view that the race will happen."
The FIA does not intend to cancel the Russian GP according to the governing body's president Jean Todt.
SUPERBIKES ALREADY CANCELLED
Media speculation about the race, to be held on a street circuit around facilities used for the 2014 Winter Olympics, began after Moscow annexed the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine in March 2014.
The Russian round of the World Superbike championship that had been scheduled for Moscow Raceway on September 21 2014 has been cancelled.
Organisers said a decision was reached because the current political situation affected the capabilities of a number of key partner companies essential to run the event.
Vorobyev said work in Sochi was progressing well and had picked up speed as soon as the Olympics finished in February 2014.
RUSSIAN CONFIDENT OF HOSTING GP
Vorobyev siad: "We have entered a very active phase in the construction. We are doing the final interior works on the team buildings, pit building and main grandstand.
"We are preparing for laying the final layer of asphalt which will be done quite soon. We are confident that in August we will have the circuit completed."
The promoter said a decision on how many temporary stands would be installed around the circuit would be made by May 20 2014 when details of the ticketing programme would also be announced.
Organisers plan to sell 55 000 tickets with overseas visitors expected to account for about 20% of the crowd.
Richard Cregan, who was chief executive of the Abu Dhabi circuit and is now acting as a consultant to Sochi organisers said: "It's going very well at the moment. There's no question it will be tight but it will be ready it will be complete.
"We had a good meeting with the FIA and (race director) Charlie (Whiting) for the inspections and all that so that's all going to be scheduled soon. Charlie's quite happy and obviously he'll come and inspect and then set up a second inspection date and go from there."
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