Category Archives: Formula one

Formula 1 2011 – Fantastic season ahead

The 2011 Formula 1 season is all set to begin and it is going to be a fantastic one at that. Not only do we have an Indian on the grid for the second year in a row, we also have the first ever grand prix on Indian soil. This season is going to be a special one for the Indian Formula 1 fans as the stars they have been watching on TV will actually be letting their car rip in Delhi this year.

The Indians will have their own team to cheer for and will be hoping that Force India has a great year this time. This season too will be a hard fought one and again the top teams will battle out for the constructers championship. Red Bull the winners of 2010 will again be a strong team and will receive a tough competition from McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault. Force India who finished 7th last year would want to improve on their standing and try to creep up the ladder this season. Narain Karthikeyan will also be excited to be involved in India’s first grand prix this year and Karun Chandhok who will be a reserve driver for LOTUS will still be harboring thoughts of driving in Delhi too.

This is surely going to be a great year and the season is all set being in Australia this week. Let’s hope for another great year for the motorsports fans and special congratulations to all the Indians who will finally see their favorite drivers outpacing each other at Noida later this year.

Karun to test for Lotus and Sreesanth replaces Praveen Kumar

Karun Chandhok will be testing for team Lotus, this Sunday at Valencia, Spain. Karun Chandhok who said that he was considering an opportunity as a third driver in a good team would want to grab this opportunity with both hands. Good performances here would for surely help him to return to the starting grid in 2012. Team Lotus Principal Tony Fernandes said that Karun was with the team as a guest in the pre-season testing in Valencia last week and now will have some time in the car.

On a telephonic conversation from Malaysia Tony Fernandes said

“We would like him to be reserve driver but we’ve got to see whether it all works out, that’s the plan,”

“He is going to get a couple of slots in the testing now in Jerez and Barcelona,” added the AirAsia airline boss. And then we’ll decide after that.”

“(Technical head) Mike (Gascoyne) and (team CEO) Riad (Asmat) and everyone else feel he’s the right guy to add value to the team.” He added.

Elsewhere in cricket India’s world cup preparation hit a road block when injured pacer Praveen Kumar was deemed unfit to take part in the event. Sreesanth has replaced Praveen Kumar in the world cup squad. Sreesanth would be really happy with this opportunity and would want to take advantage of the same with some good performances.

Speaking to the media a visibly elated Sreesanth said “It is a great opportunity and a great challenge to be a part of Indian team for the World Cup. I am lucky to be a part of it and am looking forward to giving my best in the tournament,”

“I am just looking forward to giving my best in the World Cup. I am absolutely fine with any role given to me. Whatever I would be asked to do I will perform accordingly.” He added.

So Sreesanth will join the pace attack along with Zaheer, Nehra and Munaf. Praveen’s absence for sure will be a big blow to Indian chances as he provides a steady option with the new ball. Praveen has been economical with the new ball for India and often provided the team with crucial breakthroughs. Sreesanth for sure will have to match that consistency when he does get a chance. So injury claims yet another victim for the Indians ahead of a major event. Let’s hope that it not a major loss and Sreesanth Justifies his position and delivers for team India.

Cricket World Cup and Formula 1 – Big year for Sports in India

Team Force India will be in the focus when the first F1 Grand Prix kicks on in India later this year

If 2010 was big for India, 2011 will be even bigger. The 2010 had India host the Commonwealth Games and in spite of being in the news for all the wrong reasons the games was a success. The games were also made memorable by India’s second place finish on the medals tally just behind Australia. Now in 2011 we have the Cricket world cup followed by India’s first Formula 1 race later this year. For a cricket fan it can’t get bigger than a cricket world cup.The kind of euphoria cricket generates in India cannot be matched by any other sporting event.

This will be the third time India will be hosting the world cup and it is a great honor for the country as well as the people to stage the event. India have had pretty good success rate with the world cups hosted in the subcontinent as they made the semis on all the three occasions. They will be hoping that they do better than that this time. As with CWG 2010, the cricket world cup preparation has also started on a wrong note when Eden Gardens was deemed unfit to host the India-England game by the ICC review committee. This has raised questions over the ability of CAB (Cricket Association of Bengal) to get the stadium ready soon enough to at least host the rest of the games. The fans for sure will be disappointed with this effort by the administrators involved as losing a high profile game will be a big loss to them. The game was finally moved to Bangalore, so everything is fine now with the schedule. The ICC though will take a call as to whether Eden is ready enough to host the rest of the games in the coming days.

The other major sporting event in India is the Formula 1. India for the first time this year will host their first Formula 1 race in Noida, Delhi. This has been in the pipeline for a long time now but has finally become a reality. The preparations are at full swing and this will give an opportunity for Delhi to repair their image after the controversies over the CWG2010 arrangements. If reports are to be believed, the Delhi track is well ahead of schedule and will be ready before the D-day. The race is scheduled to take place on the 30th of October, so the administrators have ample time to get the track ready.

The F1 race is also made special by having our own F1 team Force India on the grid and also having Narain Karthikeyan racing for HRT this year. It will be fantastic if Force India can get a podium finish in their debut race in India. So 2011 will be great year for Indian sports, with India being the hosts for two major sporting events. The Formula 1 enthusiasts in the country will be really excited with the prospect of having the first F1 race in India. I hope that the organizers of this event leave no stone unturned and make sure that the track is up and running well before the deadline. It will be great if at least the F1 preparations stay away from any major controversies.

The cricket world cup is just couple of weeks away and with India touted as one of the favorites to claim the title; it will be really interesting to see how they respond. In spite of the slight blip with the Eden Gardens, I hope that BCCI pull this off with flying colours.

Narain Karthikeyan has another crack at Formula 1

Narain Karthikeyan makes a comeback to Formula 1 racing after 5 years

Narain Karthikeyan has managed to get a Formula 1 drive for the 2011 season with Hispania Racing Team (HRT). This will be the second time Narain will compete in F1 after his association with Jordan in 2005. Narain will be thrilled as he will be racing in F1 again in the year when India will host its first Grand Prix at Delhi. With Karun Chandhok still looking for a possible F1 seat in 2011, it might end up a great year for F1 lovers in India if both of them manage to race this year.

Speaking to the media, the 33 year old Indian was rightfully ecstatic about fulfilling his dream of being on the F1 grid for the first Grand Prix in India.

“I have worked really hard to come back to F1 and it will be a dream come true to race in the first ever Indian Grand Prix in front of my fellow Indians. I hope that they will spur me on with their blessings and good wishes,” said Karthikeyan.

Narain thanked the Tata Group, who have been instrumental in getting him the F1 seat this year.

“It’s been a while in the making, but I am delighted to be racing again in Formula 1 in 2011. I have always maintained that I have not given up on my desire to return to the top level of motor sport. I am confident that I have the pace, the fitness and the will to succeed in Formula 1. I am extremely grateful to the Tata Group, without whose unwavering support, this comeback would not have been possible.

“I’m looking forward to racing for HRT, and to working again with Dr Colin Kolles (MD/Team Principal, Hispania Racing). We have a long standing and excellent working relationship together,” said Karthikeyan.

It will be a great year for the Indian motorsport fans as not only there is an Indian team on the Grid for the 2011 Delhi race, but now we also have a confirmed Indian driver on the grid.

Source: Rediff

Formula 2 – Armaan hangs on to top 10 spot

Armaan Ebrahim notched up his first podium finish in Formula Two at Spain

A brilliant finish in the final race of the season at Valencia helped Armaan to hold on to the top 10 spot in the overall standings. Armaan had a brilliant race in the round 17 and 18 in Valencia where he managed his first podium finish. It was a memorable race for the Indian driver when he finished 3rd in the first race and 7th in the second race.

With Ajith and Parthiva suddenly doing the disappearing act in the middle of the season, Armaan was the lone Indian representative at the end of it all. It was a brilliant debut season for Armaan in F2 and he will hope to build on the same in the coming season. The 21 year old Indian driver proves that he is one of the most promising Indian talents in motor racing following in the footsteps of Narain Karthikeyan and Karun Chandhok. Hopefully we will see him racing alongside the best in the world in Formula 1 in the future.

Saina, Abhinav and Vijender – The stars India need

Saina and her coach P Gopichand return to a warm reception in India after her fantastic win in the Indonesian Open.

In India it would seem for an outsider that cricket is the only sport in existence. Hockey (India’s National game) has been on a wane for a long time now and nothing has been done about it. Indian Hockey team had to face the ignominy of not qualifying for the world cup and have pretty much struggled at the world stage over the past decade or so. So even though until the last few years we haven’t achieved anything great in cricket the major difference between cricket and other sports were the stars and individual achievements.

Cricket has always given its fan a star to idolize, which was something lacking in other sports. In the 90’s Leander and Mahesh captured the imagination of the Indians with wonderful performances and so did Gopichand with this All England title but not much from the other sports. But the last few years has changed the trend. Starting from Abhinav Bindra’s brilliant gold at the Olympics to Saina Nehwal’s wonderful run in Badminton, Indian sports has come a long way in that time. We have Vijender Singh in Boxing, Somdev in tennis, and Saina in Badminton and Abhinav Bindra in shooting and Viswanathan Anand in Chess. Saina I feel will end up as the best Indian women sportsperson in the history of Indian sports. At just 20 she has scaled enormous peaks and has become world number two and I hope that she becomes the best player in the world soon.

That is quite a line up I mentioned above, adding to that list is Armaan Ebrahim (Formula Two racer), Parthiva Sureshwaran (Formula two) and Karun Chandhok (Second Indian after Narain to represent in Formula 1) and Narain himself in NASCAR (US) reviving India’s interest in motorsports. So considering all this the last 10 years has been a golden period for Indian sports. I always believed that you need stars in other sports to get the kids interested. Media needs to play an important role in this too.

The next major hurdle now is the sponsors. Recently I was in conversation with one of our American colleague’s at lunch during the Soccer world cup and we asked him why American youngsters are not taking up Soccer as their career considering how well their National team performed at the event. He said it all came down to the money. Other sports in US such as Football, Baseball and Basketball ensure million dollar contracts, scholarship in a good college etc which soccer doesn’t here. Which was a very valid point as for parents to encourage their kids to take up a sport as a career, they will consider the financial aspect as their major criteria. That’s where cricket scores over the other sports in India.

Now with stars like Saina, Abhinav and Vijender in the mix I hope that these sports receive sponsors too. All the money right now goes only to one sport and it will be great if the respective associations try and get sponsorship and promote other sports to encourage youngsters to take up the same. I know this will be a long process and cannot be achieved overnight but we have to move in that direction.

A good talent should not be lost due to lack of money. We have a world number 1 middle weight boxer, World number two badminton player, Olympic gold medalist in shooting, Top 100 men’s tennis player and 4 players in world motorsports. This is indeed the golden era for Indian sports and we need to make full use of the same and hope that this scenario is not wasted. Good luck to Saina and others for the Commonwealth games in India. I hope that they make India proud win lots of medals in the upcoming CW games.

Formula two – Ajith speaks about his love for racing and the season ahead

Ajith speaks exclusively to Formulatwo.com

In an exclusive interview to Formula two website Ajith speaks about his goals for this season and also about the interest in motorsports in India. Ajith mainly talks about the current season and about his preparation for the next race in Morocco. He thanks his family for extending their support and for understanding his love for racing. He feels that it not always about winning or losing but it’s about living one’s dreams.

Please click here to read the entire interview from formula two official website.