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MotoGP commits long-term plan to India, first race likely in 2023
9/22/2022 10:36:58 PM
agencies
NEW DELHI, Sept 22: In a massive boost for motor sport in the country, the MotoGP organisers on Wednesday announced that the biggest two-wheel racing event could come to India as early as next year.
An MoU, which promises seven races in as many years, was announced, but MotoGP organisers Dorna Sports and Indian promoters Faristreet Sports did not set a date for the first race, which is being branded as 'Grand Prix of Bharat'.
If 2023 doesn't work out, both parties aim to conduct a testing event the same year before the inaugural round in 2024.
Dorna will announce the 2023 calendar soon.
The MoU was announced in the presence of Dorna Sports MD Carlos Ezpeleta and Indian promoter Fairstreet Sports (FSS) COO Pushkar Nath and director Amit Sandill.
The round when it happens will also include races in junior category -- Moto2 and Moto3.
The race venue will be the state of the art Buddh International Circuit, home to the defunct Indian Grand Prix.
Once the stakeholders can decide the dates, the rack track will be homologated by world governing body FIM, which is seen as a formality since the track has already hosted an event of the stature of Formula 1.
Formula 1 departed after three seasons due to financial, tax and bureaucratic hurdles but Ezpeleta expressed surprise that India, the world's largest two wheeler market, has not hosted MotoGP yet.
"Honestly from Dorna's side it is surprising the call has not been made before. MotoGP is a product meant for India and India is a country meant for MotoGP. The match is a good one,"Ezpeleta said.
"We had not been approached for MotoGP in previous years but with support of the Indian promoters, all the parts boxes have ben checked.
"All the major manufactures that are part of MotoGP have shown a lot of interest in coming to India," he added.
Though the official statement clearly mentioned the race will happen in 2023 but Ezpeleta said getting all the pieces together to host a race of this scale is always a complicated affair.
Around 5000 people including riders and staff work during a MotoGP round. Ezpeleta claimed that a MotoGP weekend generates economic activity of 100 million euros.
"The MoU is for seven years which can start as soon as next year. Putting together a MotoGP round is a huge job. A pre season test of machinery and tyres have to be tested at the venue.
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