Force India team owner Vijay Mallya has expressed his dismay over the loss of the Indian Grand Prix for 2014, but he is confident that the race will return in the near future.
Bernie Ecclestone confirmed a few weeks ago that the race would not feature on the congested calendar for next season, with the organizers going on to reveal that this was in order to secure an early slot on the 2015 schedule. However, Mallya believes that – regardless of the reason – the loss of the race is a great shame.
“To miss a year for whatever reason is obviously disappointing,” he is quoted as saying by Autosport. “Racing schedules are obviously important, but whether a country as important as India should miss out on a race in one calendar year is a debatable question.
“I am hoping that we will see the race back in India in 2015 if Bernie has decided that there cannot be a race in 2014, because according to him the calendar cannot accommodate it. But I think Bernie is smart enough to understand the enormous potential that there is in India. I don’t think he will take a short-term view.”
The Indian economy is one of the fastest-growing in the world, making it an important market for Formula One. However, the race promoters are adamant that the race has a future despite skipping 2014.
Incidentally, today marks the sixth anniversary of Vijay Mallya’s buy-out of the old Spyker team, which was renamed ‘Force India’ the following season.