Local authorities in Bangkok have approved the layout for the potential Formula one track set to run throughout the city. The plans are to have the race debut in 2015. In that time, the Sports Authority of Thailand will need approval from the FIA and Bernie Ecclestone.
Thailand is a promising location for a Grand Prix, as well. In 2010 Red Bull did a demonstration run throughout the downtown area of Bangkok, attracting more than 100,000 spectators. If this is any indication of Formula One I Teresa in Thailand, then it is only a matter of time before the race is approved to go ahead.
The track itself will be 5.995 kilometers in length and will go by many popular tourist attractions.
Thailand in, who is out?
As we have seen before, the F1 calendar has a limit. 20 races is the feasible maximum number of races that is safe for the teams and accommodating for time to build next season’s cars. If Thailand is in, along with several other proposed tracks like New Jersey and Russia, the question of who will be booted off the calendar is raised.
Some obvious candidates would be Korea or maybe India. Both have struggled to generate a lot of income for the sport, as attendance of the races has been well under the tracks’ capacities.
One would think Bahrain would be another track in danger. The political conflicts in the area have made getting to the race and operating at the track less than ideal. Even if conditions in the area are better than the media portray it, the image Bahrain is given is very negative. Plans to make it a night race in 2014 indicate that there is a desire to keep the track in the calendar for the long run.
The sport has ally of thinking to do. The FIA and Bernie Ecclestone need to put their foot down and either restrict the number of tracks vying to get on the calendar or to eliminate races that are unprofitable or unpopular. These will be tough decisions as money will always be invoked, but in the long run, the benefits of having the right tracks on the calendar will help the sport on the whole.