After two days of circuit inspection, the Korean Grand Prix will go ahead as planned in twelve days time. The FIA’s Charlie Whiting issued a “green light” for the circuit after examining the safety and condition of the track according to the race organizers via Mr. Noble at AUTOSPORT.
“We are delighted that all works are now finished to the complete satisfaction of the FIA, and we join the whole of Korea in welcoming the Formula 1 fraternity to the Korea International Circuit for the first time,” he said.
“The KIC has been constructed to the highest standards, and will become the epicentre of motorsport in the country. We believe the Korean Grand Prix will be the catalyst to ignite enormous interest in the sport across the nation.”
According to the organizers, Whiting said he would issue a circuit license to (ASN) KARA and that he was satisfied with the results of the inspection.
There have been many concerns over the preparedness of the circuit and while the infrastructure appears to be in varying degrees of completion, it would seem that Whiting feels the actual track and safety structures are in place and capable of hosting a grand prix.
Korea is making a bid for large events such as the G20 summit as well as the 2018 Olympics and a cancellation of the race would have reflected very poorly on the country as well as organizers. It would have also had a negative impact on F1 as well and while we are all delighted the show will go on, we are also reticent of some of the difficulties that could be experienced with a hastily completed circuit.
Whiting certainly knows what he is looking at and how to host a grand prix…he’s seen a few in his day so I take comfort that the safety systems are in place and that this will be a successful event even if the amenities are quite spartan in appeal. All eyes will be on the asphalt as it was laid last week and the forces of the cars in the heat of battle are immense.
The big question now is, who will the circuit favor? Red Bull, Ferrari or McLaren?