The 2014 season has been pencilled in as the inaugural date for a Russian Grand Prix.
Back in April, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone said that up to three locations in the world’s largest country were potentially in the running as host venues, but that a “big push” is being made for the city of Sochi – host of the 2014 winter Olympic Games – to be the plum choice.
Sochi is located just north of the border with Russia’s number-one
enemy neighbour Georgia and on the edge of the Black Sea.
The region’s deputy Development Minister, Yuri Reilyan, has been quoted by the local business newspaper Vedomosti as saying: “[Ecclestone] suggests holding the first grand prix in autumn 2014.”
However, the green light to construction has not been given, and only will be when Bernie can “guarantee that the race will definitely take place, and the circuit will not be abandoned in the future.”
A veiled reference to former venues like Kyalami, Buenos Aires, Fuji and possibly Turkey, perhaps?
The circuit would be built in the Olympic Park region of the Imeretinskaya Valley (pictured) at an estimated cost of $200 million, and a draft design project has been agreed with none other than – you guessed it – the ever-ubiquitous Hermann Tilke.
Great! Yet another ‘Tilkedrome’!
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