• Bahrain rescheduling

India happy to change date to accommodate Bahrain

Dhananjay Khadilkar
June 1, 2011 « Growing support for Monaco changes | »
India's organisers are happy to take make their race the season finale © Press Association

Promoters of the inaugural Indian Grand Prix have revealed they would be happy to shift the date of their race to December to make way for the possible rescheduling of the Bahrain Grand Prix, but insist they will still be ready to host the event on October 30 if necessary.

The World Motor Sport Council will make a decision on Friday as to whether Bahrain will be reinstated on the 2011 calendar, with Bernie Ecclestone saying it would take India's slot if it is. The Indian Grand Prix would then be postponed until December 11, making it the season finale and extending the calendar by two weeks.

"Whether the race is held on October 30 or on some other date, it's alright with us," Jaypee Sports International (JPSI) spokesperson Sameer Kumar told ESPNF1, adding that JPSI have been told informally about the likelihood of a date change.

Mercedes boss Ross Brawn has recently voiced his concern that an extended calendar would create an "unacceptable" workload for the teams. But when asked if there was a possibility of the teams boycotting a December race, Kumar said: "All teams will be racing regardless of the date."

Another concern for the Indian Grand Prix could be a dip in interest if the title battle is decided ahead of the final race, but Kumar brushed that suggestion aside.

"I feel this would be offset by the fact that this is the first race in India and that people would still come in huge numbers to have this unique experience," he said "In fact, the Indian GP would be an important addition to the whole India experience for foreign tourists as well."

He also said ticketing would not be an issue as they have not yet gone on sale.

"The tickets will go on sale from July," Kumar added. "It was supposed to have started in May. However, because of the enormity of the operation and certain issues related to pricing and logistics, the process will start early July."

When asked about the status of building work, Kumar revealed that 90% of the track is currently complete.

"The track will get completed by the end of July or first week of August," he added. "We expect the homologation to take place in August. Grandstand, paddock, hospitality and press facilities would be completed by September end, at the latest."