The countdown to the F1 race in India has begun with JPSI commencing the ticket sale for the Formula 1 Airtel Grand Prix of India that will be held in Greater Noida this year. The huge F1 complex at Buddh International Circuit will accommodate more than 1 lakh people once ready and will have space for parking of 50,000 cars, besides a slew of infrastructure support systems. The organisers have divided the stands depending up on the facilities provided at each stand, with Picnic stands and Natural stands not having any seats. Tickets for the race start from Rs. 2,500 for the Natural South Stand and Rs. 12,500 for the Premium South Stand. Tickets for the East Zone stands range from Rs. 6,500 to Rs 8,500. The ticket rate for the main grand stand is Rs. 35,000. The company has roped in ’Bookmyshow.com’ as their exclusive ticketing partner and has tied up with Cafe Coffee Day for retailing its tickets across the country. Revenues from tickets sales are expected to fetch the company around Rs. 150 crore. Around 1,000 tickets were sold out within the first 100 minutes.
According to Sameer Gaur, the Managing Director and Chief Executive of JPSI, the name of the circuit is derived from the word Buddha, and represents peace and calm. The track is expected to host some of the most challenging motorsports events in the world and is well suited to meet the requirements of powerful, high-spec racing cars and performance-heavy motorcycles. The track’s combination of straights, corners and elevation changes have been designed to allow high speeds and provide opportunities for overtaking, which is what makes motor racing exciting.
Manoj Gaur, the Executive Chairman of Jaiprakash Associates Limited and Chairman of JPSI, had earlier said that the company has earmarked nearly Rs. 1,700 crore for the entire project and hopes to break even in the next 5 years or so. The funds have been raised through a mix of debt and equity. The circuit will be part of the 2,500 acres (10 km2) Jaypee Greens Sports City, which is planned to include a 100,000 seat cricket stadium, 18-hole golf course, a 25,000-seat hockey stadium and a sports academy. “We are developing a motorsports academy, a cricket stadium, a cricket academy, a tennis academy etc. Cricket crazy people will come here and go back as motor sports fans,” said Gaur, while speaking to newspersons.
The nearly-operational 5.14 circuit, about 40 km from New Delhi, can accommodate up to 125,000 spectators, including 25,000 fans at the main grandstand and thousands more at the "natural grass" stands and temporary stands. The track has been designed by renowned German architect, Herman Tilke, who has also designed other world class race circuits in Malaysia, Bahrain, China, Turkey, Indonesia, the UAE, South Africa, South Korea and the US. FIA officials will visit the circuit on September 1 for a final scrutiny before they give the go ahead. Bernie Ecclestone, president & CEO of Formula One management, has recently affirmed that the maiden Indian GP is well on track. As per the FIA timetable, the India leg of the F1 race is scheduled for October 30, 2011 and will be the 17th race of the 2011 Formula One season. Qualifying and practice rounds will begin from October 28, 2011.