Hyderabad to host Formula E in February despite racing league hiccups

FIA official expresses satisfaction over facilities in and around the racing circuit, track infrastructure; suggests “very small changes” to be carried out before the marquee event

December 11, 2022 11:08 pm | Updated December 12, 2022 08:45 pm IST - Hyderabad

Race cars zoom through during the finale of the Indian Racing League in Hyderabad on Sunday.

Race cars zoom through during the finale of the Indian Racing League in Hyderabad on Sunday. | Photo Credit: RAMAKRISHNA G

Hyderabad is all set to host Formula E next year and the race circuit has impressed a Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) official who was on a two-day visit to the city for inspection at the street racing circuit. The season finale of the Indian Racing League (IRL) ended on Sunday with Godspeed Kochi winning the championship title, and the FIA official left India after witnessing the final. 

“An FIA inspector was present to inspect the track and was happy with the circuit. He was on a two-day visit during the weekend and suggested some very small changes which we will carry out in the coming days,” Manoj Dalal, a Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI) official told The Hindu in an exclusive interaction. 

The senior official, who was the race director of the IRL 2022 for the Chennai leg, further informed that the FIA inspector will submit his report to the governing body and that the federation is confident of getting the nod to host the marquee event in February next year. 

“The official was very much happy with the facilities in and around the circuit, the track infrastructure and will now submit his report to the FIA. We are hopeful of getting a Grade-2 certificate and are awaiting the green signal,” Mr.Manoj informed. 

Season nine of the Formula E World Championship will see 11 teams and 22 drivers racing the new Gen3 cars that are designed and optimised specifically for street racing as Hyderabad will host Round 4 of the total 17 races.

Safety measures

FIA has laid stringent guidelines with the safety of cars and drivers being top priority and the track’s readiness was tested in real time during the twin rounds of IRL races. Although a full race was possible only on Sunday, race cars zoomed through at breathtaking speeds around the 2.8km circuit during practice sessions and warmups.

“All the safety parameters were in place at the circuit and it’s a fabulous race track for the drivers. From a safety point of view to debris fencing the barriers, everything is in place and today’s race was really good. It was planned well and there were eight fully equipped ambulances ready in case of a medical emergency, and the firefighting equipment is brilliant. Overall, we have the infrastructure and everything that is required to host an international race. We are well equipped to host Formula-E in February,” the FMSCI official said.  

The last time an international racing event was held in India was in October 2013 when the Buddh International Circuit hosted the Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix. Come 2023, racing fans from across the globe will descend on Hyderabad to witness a spectacle that will remain a golden chapter in the annals of India’s motor racing history. 

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