Buddh to host FIA's GT1 championship

After successfully hosting the inaugural Indian Grand Prix last October, the Buddh International Circuit in Greater Noida will stage the tenth and last round of this year’s FIA GT1 World Championship on December 2.

The Grand Touring Cars championship is a ten-round series, organised by Stephane Ratel Organisation (SRO).

SRO chief Stephane Ratel said an event in India has been on top of the priority list, and this race will complete the 2012 calendar. “India completes this year’s calendar in every way,” Ratel said. “It fulfils our ambition to continue to break new ground in the global market, taking world-class GT racing to new and exciting locations.

Sameer Gaur, managing director of Jaypee Sports International, said: “It is a matter of great pleasure for us to be a part of the FIA GT1 World Championship. Having hosted a hugely successful F1 race, we are fully prepared for another successful international race.”

An ecstatic Federation of Motor Sports in India president Vicky Chandhok, who oversaw the entire process, said the entry of GT1 into India was the next big step.

“The inaugural edition of the Indian Grand Prix was a big hit and that has paved way for a lot of other events coming our way,” Chandhok said. “We already have the F1 Grand Prix, the JK Asia Racing series, MRF is planning on bringing their international formula, the Superbike series is expected to come, MotoGP as well... so GT1 coming to India is really going to open up some avenues. This is a very important stage for motor sports in our country,” he added.

Chandhok also said the Indian National Rally Championship, which has been in a slump since Red Rooster Racing packed their bags, will receive a much-needed boost this year.

“We will get a multinational sponsor and that will bring about a big change,” said Chandhok.

Schedule (circuits in brackets): April 8: France (Circuit Paul Armagnac, Nogaro). April 22: Belgium (Circuit Zolder, Heusden-Zolder). May 27: Spain (Circuito de Navarra, Los Arcos). July 8: Portugal (Autodromo Internacional do Algarve, Portimao). August 26: China (TBA, Beijing). September 2: China (Ordos International Circuit, Ordos City). September 16: Russia (Moscow Raceway, Volokolamsk). October 7: The Netherlands (Circuit Park Zandvoort, Zandvoort). November 4: Argentina (Potrero de los Funes Circuit, San Luis). December 2: India (Buddh International Circuit, Greater Noida).

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