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Jaypee pins Indian GP hopes on next government

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Greater Noida, March 23 (IANS) Sameer Gaur, CEO of Indian Grand Prix promoters Jaypee Sports International, has said the Formula 1’s return to the Buddh International Circuit (BIC) in 2015 will depend on how the next central government treats the sport.

Gaur told IANS at the BIC Sunday that he will meet F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone next month in his bid to get the race back next year after it was dropped from the 2014 calendar owing to bureaucratic and tax issues faced by the stakeholders (Jaypee, F1 group and teams).

Ecclestone told IANS earlier in the month that he wanted financial guarantees from Jaypee Group for the race to see out its five-year contract. The first three editions took place 2011-2013.

Gaur said that a lot of Eccelestone’s demands depend on the next union government that is likely to take office by end of May.

“I will be meeting with Mr. Ecclestone in April and we will talk about all the issues which ensure F1 comes back to India. Having said that, a lot will also depend on the support of the next government at the centre. Hopefully, the government will make things easier for us,” said Gaur ahead of the April-May general elections.

Gaur was confident that he would convince Ecclestone for a round next year, but in the long run the government support to the event was a must.

“We made this facility for F1 and we will try everything for the race to stay here. The government needs to realise F1’s potential and embrace the sport,” added Gaur.

Most of the F1 races around the world are backed by the government which pays huge sums to the Formula One Management as hosting fees. Jaypee, as a private entity, pays around $40 million annually to host the race.

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