NOVEMBER 15, 2007

The people behind the Grand Prix in India

The word from India is that a deal has been signed for a construction company called JP Associates to build a Formula 1 track at Greater Noida, a major new development to the east of New Delhi.

JP Associates is part of the Jaypee Group, a diversified industrial conglomerate, which is involved in civil engineering, cement, hydroelectricity, real estate, highways and hotels. It is controlled by one of India's richest men, Jaiprakash Gaur, a 75-year-old magnate who is reckoned to be worth at least $600m. Among its other activities Jaypee owns and operates four five-star hotels in the area and is developing real estate on 450 acres at Greater Noida, where it is building golf resorts, villas, townhouses, penthouses, condominiums, studio apartments, commercial complexes and shopping malls. It is also constructing new expressways to give easier acces to the new development. The plan is for the track to host its first F1 race in 2010.

It seems that the plan is for a 3.1-mile track on a 700-acre site. This would be located next to the new Taj Expressway, which would create a fast link to the city of Agra and to the planned Taj International Airport, which will be located at Greater Noida. The track will be designed by Tilke Associates and built by JP.

It seems that the event will be promoted by JPSK Sports, a subsidiary of JP Associates with the Indian OlympicAssociationno longer involved.