Greater Noida: With about six months left for the Indian Grand Prix, expectations and excitement surrounded the official logo launch in Greater Noida on Monday.
The race, first of its kind to be held in India is being handled by the Jaypee Sports International Limited, who are confident of the success of the event.
At a Press Conference in Greater Noida, the organisers assured that the construction of the track has already been completed and the 1,20,000-capacity stadium around it will be fully completed by July, well before the scheduled race.
Manoj Gaur, the Chairman of the JPSI group said at the Press Conference, “We are more than confident that we will complete the stadium in time. The track is already built and the stadium is being built around it. We are building 400 toilet blocks as well. 15 august ka jhanda wahin fehrayenge (We will hoist the national flag at the stadium on India’s Independence Day to indicate that it would be complete by then).
“Our reputation is at stake, whatever western people think about us, we are very responsible”, he added.
On being asked about the commercial feasibilities of such an enormous venture, Manoj said, “The entire cost of building it is close to Rs 1700 crore. We have taken a part of it as loan for 8-10 years. But we believe it will come out good. We have the infrastructure and the facilities for a lot of things and we are sure that the investment will prove its worth. The sponsorships lie with the FOM but JPSI has the ticketing rights.”
On a day when Suresh Kalmadi was arrested by the CBI, the organisers of the Indian Grand Prix ridiculed the fact that the Commonwealth Games scandals had any relevance in their scenario.
The organisers were confident that there would be ample participation from the people within the country and abroad. “We hope all our facilities are used, 4000 rooms have already been booked. There are several hotels for the accommodation.”
On being asked whether the cricket loving Indian crowd would accept motorsports, Manoj said “They (The crowd) will come as cricket crazy and go back as motorsport crazy”.
The organisers weren't too keen on revealing the exact prices yet. “We are in the final stage of the decision making (on the ticket prices). We cannot disclose the prices yet but there will be different categories. We are looking at the pricing models of circuits like Abu Dhabi and Sepang which are built in a similar way”, said Sameer Gaur, MD and CEO of JPSI. They however, hinted that the basic pricing could be around Rs 2500 for a three day package.
The organisers although are still unsure about the kind of opening ceremony they would use to launch the event. “The guidelines of the FIA are very strict. We might have a 15-20 minute event on either of the three days of the event.”