Indian GP to break even in five to seven years

© Ubaid Parkar, 20 October 2012
AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal

The Indian Grand Prix won’t be a profitable enterprise for the next few years but that hasn’t discouraged the organisers one bit.

Signed to remain on the Formula 1 calendar for a decade, the Buddh International Circuit was constructed at a cost of $450 million and hosted its inaugural F1 race last year.

However, a World Superbike round for the next four seasons and a potential MotoGP race could ease the financial burden although it may not be as soon as the organisers would prefer.

"The commercial proposition is such that you can't hope to recover it in a couple of years," JPSI managing director and chief executive Sameer Gaur told Reuters. "You have to look at it from a long-term view. Maybe five to seven years, that's the time when one should be looking at breaking even."

Expansion of the facilities is one way to lure in fans for such events, along with improvement of existing services to ensure that it fills in as many seats as possible during a Grand Prix weekend.

"It's time to create some entertainment zones. Fans want a race which would be a three-day picnic,” Gaur said. "The proposed underground metro service (scheduled to be completed in 2015) would improve transport and there would be more restaurants and hotels too.

"In the next couple of years, we have to create an F1 village there, so that a fan can enjoy the race and the entertainment surrounding it,” he added.

Gaur was sure that there would be no complaints during this year’s edition of the race, claiming everything was now in order, after the debut event saw a few finishing touches missing.

“We have to make this circuit one of the most favourite tracks on the calendar. It won't happen overnight, it's a process,” he said.


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