Formula One World Championship, one of the most talked-about versions of motorsports concluded in Abu Dhabi in December 2021. While touching the finish line was no less than a fairytale ending, Indians were deprived of watching it from close quarters. However, the motorsports sector in India can be transformed easily as we have a solid combination of infrastructure, talent, and money.
In what can be seen as a positive move in the same direction, India is set to host one of the international motor-sport events, that is, the Formula E race.
India to host Formula E race in 2023
Reportedly, a letter of intent has been signed between the Telangana government and the Formula E federation. Moreover, the championship is being sponsored in India by dispatchable renewables company, Greenko Group. The championship will commence in Hyderabad’s 2.3km circuit near Hussain Sagar Lake between December 2022 and March 2023.
The letter of intent was signed in Hyderabad in the presence of the Formula E CEO Alberto Longo and track overlay director Agus Zomeno, along with Telangana IT and Industries Minister K.T. Rama Rao.
Longo said, “We are just announcing [Hyderabad] as a candidate city, but [it] is soon to be an official city in the calendar of Formula E.” He further added, “Let’s hope that that happens very soon, and we can actually enjoy a race here in Hyderabad in the months to go. Hopefully, we will be here in the months of December 2022 and March of 2023.”
Formula 1 Indian Grand Prix was cancelled in India
Though it is the first time that India will be hosting the Formula E race, it had already hosted three F1 races at the Buddh International Circuit from 2011 to 2013 before its gates were reportedly locked by the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA).
The circuit had signed a five-year deal with F1 but the 2014 edition was postponed in the aftermath of a tax dispute between the circuit and the FIA. The controversy emerged as the local government was classing F1 as entertainment and not a sport and thus, F1 was required to pay entertainment tax to the Indian government.
Thus, after the third Formula 1 championship, this will be the first major all-electric championship to take place in the country.
With Formula E coming to Hyderabad, the city joins the league of Beijing, Putrajaya, Puntal Del Este, Buenos Aires, Miami, Long Beach, Berlin, Moscow, Paris, Hong Kong, and other cities that have hosted the race since its commencement in 2014-15.
India can become a motor-sports giant
India has a racing circuit of its own in the Greater Noida region of Uttar Pradesh. It is a 5.125km long circuit and is beautifully designed by a German racetrack designer named Hermann Tilke.
Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI), founded in 1971, is the governing body for moto-sports in India. It is affiliated with the Indian Olympic Association (IOC) as well. The main function of FMSCI is to promote motorsports at the grass-root level by facilitating upcoming talents in the circle.
India never experienced a dearth of drivers. The late 2000s witnessed the emergence of Narain Karthikeyan and Karun Chandhok as the two formidable racers from India.
As far as Indian moto-sports are concerned, funding is never going to be a problem. MRF tyres and JK tyres are two challenging companies actively engaged in providing quality components to sports personnel and teams.
The need of the hour is the right encouragement to transform the industry and it can have a positive effect on the economy too.