Formula 1

F1 future bright for Nurburgring, India in doubt

Maintaining the German Grand Prix is key for the sport (©GettyImages)
Maintaining the German Grand Prix is key for the sport (©GettyImages).

The future of Formula 1 in Germany looks brighter after the new owner of the legendary Nurburgring circuit vowed to support the race.

Last week it was reported that the track, including the legendary Nordschleife and other facilities was bought by a Miami-based group called HIG Capital for around €60-70m.

However, now it has emerged in fact a Dusseldorf-based automotive group called Capricorn has in fact bought the venue for just under €80m and will invest an additional €25m into the circuit.

The group’s head Robertino Wild confirmed Der Spiegel’s report that Capricorn were in fact the new owners and at the same news conference claimed he will support a future Formula 1 race at the venue ”as long as it remains affordable”.

Wild added that the circuit will ”basically go as it was before”, however, the disastrous amusement park and roller coaster will be shut down.

Currently the German Grand Prix alternates between the country’s two highest profile circuits with this year’s race taking place at the Hockenheim venue.

While one race then has a more positive outlook, the same can not be said for the Indian Grand Prix in New Delhi.

Last week F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone claimed the race would not return to the calendar in 2015 citing tax and organisational problems, however, now the race’s future is in further in doubt as it emerged the organisers breached their contract.

Ecclestone told the IANS news agency: “The race promoters there (Jaypee) have not been able to comply with parts of the contract and they (the breaches) are mostly money related.”

Despite the problems the 83-year-old admitted he wanted to see the sport back in India as soon as possible as he believes it has the better potential of the two markets with over a billion people.

“India is among the few new F1 venues where people understand the sport and want to understand it better,” said the Briton. “That is why I have greater faith in India than China.

“I must clarify here that we still have very good relations with the (Indian) promoters and we still want to see through the remaining two years of our contract.

“But that can happen only if we get the financial guarantees,” Ecclestone added.

He even maintained hope the race can return for 2015, but admitted for that to happen, the issues would need to be resolved soon.

“I am still trying for 2015 and we have got about two months time to make that happen,” he said. “We really want to get back.”

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