The Buddh International Circuit (BIC) is ready to host the inaugural Formula One Airtel Grand Prix of India here on October 30.
Even as the last leg of cleaning up of the track and beautification of the premises was in full swing, the founder chairman of the BIC-owning Jaypee Group, Jaiprakash Gaur, on Tuesday said the successful conduct of the F-1 race would wipe out the “shame” of the Commonwealth Games and enhance India's reputation on the world map.
The 5.14-km track, built in a span of two-and-a-half years, may take some time to be completed but it appears fit and well-equipped to hold the race.
“It is a leap of faith which India will feel on October 30. We have invested in the future and youth of the country. We wanted to do something which no one could point a finger at,” said Jaypee Sports International (JPSI) chairman Manoj Gaur about the more than $400 million worth BIC.
On the occasion of the formal unveiling of the BIC, a large contingent of mediapersons was taken around the track and the whole arena.
Racy theme song
The launch of the racy theme song, ‘Hum main raftaar, jeete baar baar,' sung by Leslie Lewis, Daler Mehndi, Lucky Ali and KK (representing Christianity, Sikhism, Islam and Hinduism respectively), added secular flavour to the atmosphere.
Red Bull driver Neel Jani did a few rounds of the circuit to give a feel of things to expect on the race day. The Swiss driver's exploits left the gathering awe-struck.
Indian driver Narain Karthikeyan, who drove on the track in the morning, was satisfied with his first experience on the BIC.
“The third turn was fantastic, six cars can move simultaneously,” said Narain, a Hispania Racing member.
The BIC, dominantly wearing the colours of the Tricolour, has some bright spots and uniqueness about it.
Most of the structures built on the campus are eco-friendly (the walls are made of glass). The track has some special features like one of the longest straights (of 1.21 km) in the world and one of the best elevation changes.
It boasts of a state-of-the-art media centre to accommodate around 600 journalists.
It has several facilities for the audience to keep them entertained for the three days of the race (including the free practice and qualifying days).
The organisers assured that the event would be a peaceful one.
“We will have multi-layered and foolproof security. More than 3,000 policemen will be on duty,” said Manoj Gaur.
The path leading to the BIC is equipped with facilities to thwart any possible terror threat. The Jaypee chairman also denied the possibility of any threat from the ‘agitating farmers'.
In case of any emergency, the BIC has a medical centre, approved by the International Automobile Federation (FIA).
The Indian GP is drawing more and more fans as the race day comes closer.
“Around 70 per cent of the tickets have been sold so far and 90 per cent of the corporate boxes have been sold. Only five corporate boxes are left,” said Sameer Gaur, the JPSI managing director.