Exciting stuff!

Organisers of India’s first-ever Grand Prix are continuing their preparations for the arrival of the Formula 1 circus to the subcontinent. A massive complex sited some 30 kilometres from the capital city, New Delhi, has been under construction since November last year.

Indian GP Circuit Design

The site will include a metro station and an eight-lane motorway between the city and the site, dubbed locally as a ‘sport city’.

Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone confirmed plans for an Indian GP, which is expected to occur in the latter stages of the 2011 season.

Mark Hughes, the Vice-President of JPSK Sports – a subsidiary company of the Jaypee industrial corporation that secured a 10-year contract for hosting rights for the event – spoke with Reuters about the project.

"We fully expect the race to go ahead next October,” Hughes – the former Operations Director for the Bahrain Grand Prix – said.

The circuit is part of a sports city being constructed … outside the Indian capital on a 2,800-acre (11.3km²) site with areas set aside for the Formula 1 track and a 100,000-seater international cricket stadium.

The circuit is a private venture and has a budget of $350M, so without government assistance we fully expect to stay within cost.

"We expect to complete construction by July 2011 and, once the FIA has given its approval, we can finalise training for marshals, track officials and medical staff in time for an October race."

The circuit will be designed by the ubiquitous Hermann Tilke, and is expected to hold a capacity crowd of 120,000 fans.

"It’s an undulating 5.5-kilometre (3.4-mile) track which we expect to have the second fastest average speed of any circuit on the calendar behind Monza," Hughes added. "We sent the details to all the teams and they programmed the information into their simulators and gave us feedback on where we could make improvements and add overtaking opportunity points."

Tilke’s circuits – dubbed ‘Tilkedromes’ in some circles – have come under stern criticism from drivers, teams and fans alike for being too artificial and not adequately catering for fans by keeping them seated too far from the track action.

What are your thoughts?

[Image via F1 Fanatic]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.