Proud Lazric recollects that start of a dream

Proud Lazric recollects that start of a dream

Even as Jaypee Groups’ executive chairman Manoj Gaur and managing director Sameer Gaur spoke with passion and charisma about their creation more often than not in Hindi, chief executive officer of construction Boris Lazric nodded in approval.

The Croatian has little understanding of the language, but what the big boys were speaking of had nothing to do with language. All Lazric knew was that everything he and his team worked on, day in and day out, had finally paid off, and that’s more or less what the Gaurs had to say.

Deccan Herald caught up with the man who oversaw and helped complete one of the finest structures India has seen in recent times.

Excerpts:

Now that the track is open for the world to see, what is going through your head?

I was a member of the construction team. I am proud and privileged to have been a part of this team. I was helping Jaypee with their power plants and other facilities and one day Manoj asked me to come and help them out. As a lot of people said, it has been a very, very tough assignment for us. We have used all of our knowledge, effort and power into this. We are proud of what we have achieved today.

What kind of challenges did JPSI face during the course of building this track?

When we came here, there was nothing here. It was barren land, but we already had a design by Tilke. We knew what we had to do, so for us out first challenge was to prepare proper construction technology and a proper schedule. Fortunately for us, it all fell in a desired sequence. JPSI was really intent on getting it done and in time, so we upped the man power and got it done. No construction in the world goes on without any problems. We have had weather issues, technical problems and we have had to change the track around a little. So these were quite problematic but we had the expertise to sort it out.

There has been a lot of talk about the changes to the turns seven and ten. What prompted the move and how will it help?

When FIA made their visit, they wanted us to incorporate wider turns. I don’t want to be critical but the Abu Dhabi track is really boring. This track will obviously be very, very entertaining because, firstly we have widened the track, much to the desire of all drivers, and in addition we have widened the turns. The FIA was very pleased with this, even though it cost us more. The other day, I met Charlie Whiting, and he was full of praise for the track. I spoke to Narain Karthikeyan and he said the track is fantastic, the garages are great and that the spectators will enjoy the facilities.

Does that slight ‘improvement’ change everything?

Yes it does. It doesn’t change the fact that it is a basic track. However, it is very unique. If you have noticed, that this is the first time the FIA is taking interest in making the track interesting for the spectators, and interesting means more overtaking maneuvers. By increasing the width of the track and by making the turns interesting, it means that, three or four cars can easily overtake the other cars at most sections of the track. There is just so much space to make moves on this circuit. These are the things that we have done to improve the circuit.

Have there been any other changes in track design?

No, the wider turns were the main changes in design. Whatever else we have done is according to the designs itself. There are a few things we have to accomplish after the race but this does not affect the event per se. All I am trying to say is that, our venue is complete and we have done everything Formula One requires. We are all set to welcome Formula One to India.

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