Indian GP is great event, a solution should come out: Monisha

New Delhi, PTI | Updated : 02 August 2013, 07:55 PM

India-born Monisha Kaltenborn, the first ever woman Team Principal of a Formula One team, on Friday said it was sad that Indian Grand Prix would not be part of the 2014 calender since it was a "great event".

F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone in a reshuffle of the 2014 calender chucked out the Indian race, which is expected to be part of the 2015 season in the first half.

"It`s obviously sad that India is not on the Formula One calendar in 2014," Monisha, the Sauber Team Principal.

"In only two years India had established itself as a great event with a lot of interest by the Indian people. I truly hope that a solution can be found for the future," the 42-year-old said.

Ecclestone, the octogenarian F1 Czar, had cited political problems, a veiled reference to tax issues in the country, for dropping the Indian race.

Organisers Jaypee Sports International (JPSI) preferred a slot in October 2014 but eventually agreed for the change.

Ecclestone will present the 2014 calendar to the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) for approval next month, with teams reluctant to go to more than 20 races.

This year`s calendar has 19 races. After India`s dropping, now 21 venues are jostling to find a place in the 2014 calender with Russia likely to make its debut and New Jersey and Austria also in the fray to host a race.

Bureaucratic hurdles in India were the major reason for Ecclestone`s decision and Monisha said ideally there should not be any problems for hosting of the race.
"Formula One and India, that`s two great things, and I really think that no obstacles should be put in the way," Monisha said.

Monisha, who was born in Dehradun, categorically said that Indian GP was important for Formula One.

"Absolutely. It`s not only important for F1 and its sponsors to be present in India, it`s also a great benefit for India to be present in Formula One," she said.

"Formula One is a small and exclusive circle, which provides India with the opportunity to show its level of high tech to the whole world."

The Jaypee Group had invested over USD 400 million, including a license fee of USD 35-45 million, to build the Buddh International circuit in Greater Noida.

The inaugural edition in 2011 was a sellout but sale tickets suffered in the second edition.

First Published: Friday, August 02, 2013 07:45 PM
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