Update: Bernie Ecclestone has said that there will be no F1 race in India in 2014. However, he added that the race could return in the 2015 season.
We do not discount the possibility that Bernie is bluffing – he has been known to do that to wrangle more concessions out of the government. It is well known that read tape is a big problem for F1 in India, and perhaps he is using this threat to reduce the complications of bringing Formula One to India in 2014. We can only hope!
Original story continues!
In a statement that could be a severe jolt to Indian F 1 enthusiasts, investors, partners and the media alike, the F 1 supremo, Bernie Ecclestone has expressed his doubts about having a race in India in 2014.
At the Hungarian Grand Prix, Bernie said, “Is India going to happen next year? Probably not.”
Even more worrying is the fact that when Bernie was asked the reasons for his statement he said that they were “very political”.
The Indian F1 race track, the Buddh International Circuit at Greater Noida had made its debut in 2011 and has hosted 2 races so far. Both of them have been won by Red Bull driver and triple world champion, Sebastian Vettel.
Bernie Ecclestone, the British billionaire has been running the F 1 for decades now and drawing up a race calendar for all the circuits across the world and presenting it to the International Automobile Federation is in his kitty.
At the moment, there are 22 proposed races which are fighting for space in his calendar while most teams have said that they would like the maximum number of races to be restricted to 20.
While media speculations were afoot about the possibility of such a statement from Bernie, Jaypee Sports International’s spokesperson Askari Zaidi had said “Our agreement with Formula One Management is to hold F1 races at Buddh International Circuit (BIC) till 2015 and we are fully committed to do that,” “There is no reason for us to give up hosting F1 races.”
While it was known that there were quite a few issues which had cropped up about the 2014 F 1, the possibility of India being dropped off the calendar altogether now looms significantly large.