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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Onboard video lap of Korea’s F1 track

(I am not sure whether this had already been posted?)

Onboard video lap of Korea’s F1 track
6 September 2010 by Keith Collantine

An onboard video of Karun Chandhok’s lap around the Korean International Circuit gives a good impression of the new F1 track – and how much work the circuit organisers still have to do before the first race there next month.

The overall impression is of a layout rather like the Hungaroring but with a couple of long straights leading to slow hairpins where overtaking might be possible. See below for the video.
Onboard video lap of Korea’s F1 track | F1 Fanatic - The Formula 1 Blog
The track is bordered by barriers at the beginning and end of the lap and several of the corners have blind approaches. There are several places where barriers are yet to be built and kerbing installed.

With the track very dirty Chandhok clearly got nowhere near a representative lap time.

The footage from Codemasters’ forthcoming game F1 2010 shows how the circuit is supposed to look once construction is completed:
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
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Korea's long-term headaches

* Korean Grand Prix
Korea's long-term headaches | Formula 1 | F1 features | ESPN F1

Korea's long-term headaches
Martin Williamson September 15, 2010
Karun Chandhok's test drive on the Korean International Circuit earlier this month took place against a backdrop of last-minute construction © Press Association

With less than six weeks to go before the inaugural Korean Grand Prix, the headlines surrounding the event all continue to be dominated by the readiness of the circuit. While the race is almost certain to go ahead - the finances of the sport dictate that - there are short and long-term concerns about the whole venture.

Everything was due to be finished in July, 32 months after construction began, but labourers are still frantically working to ensure everything is completed in time.

"It will be ready, it's a must," Jason Cho, the man in charge of the Korean International Circuit, told AP this week. "If we don't finish then we don't have an event so it will be done in ten days."

Cho is also ready with reasons why things are so behind. "There's been a lot of rain compared to most years and all this land was all wetland and we had to take all the water out first … 70% of the work was because of hardening the land. If it was just regular land, we could have done it in a year. That made it more technical.

"We don't have experience in Korea of building tracks up to F1 standard. If there had been a manual of guidelines to follow, it would have made our work much easier and we would have finished sooner."

Even if the race goes ahead, the worries are not over. There are increasing concerns being voiced about the level of support for a grand prix in Korea in general, and in such a remote part of the country in particular. Some other new circuits have been overshadowed by poor attendances, and critics claim Korea will be no different.

The fears are given more substance by Peter Baek, the deputy marketing manager, who told AP the current location was not the first choice. "Initially, our CEO wanted to hold it in Seoul and have a night race that they could race on the street," he said. "That was many years ago and it didn't happen.

"Next year will be better and there will be a fan base established in Korea," he added, almost engaging in a preemptive damage-limitation exercise. "We are marketing and promoting the event but people think that it isn't ready."

The organisers refuse to reveal how many tickets have been sold, but the remote site - the nearest big city, Mokpo, is more than four hours away - can only add to the event's lack of appeal. Even if crowds do turn out then that will in turn cause its own difficulties as the infrastructure appears unable to cope with the traffic.

"Transportation-wise, there are obviously not enough planes going down to the Mokpo area," Baek told AP. "During the grand prix there's going to be chartered flights, buses, trains and all sorts of transportation available to the public. It's normally four hours to drive, I wouldn't expect more than four and a half hours even with the traffic."

Work on the track continued after the scheduled finish in July © Korean Grand Prix
Baek's confidence may well turn out to be misplaced. A nine-hour round trip - assuming the transportation promises are right - plus inevitably high-priced tickets is not likely to lure anyone but the most dedicated Korean F1 fan to the circuit. And it is unlikely to be high on the list of must-visit races for any but the most fanatical supporter. But to succeed, the organisers need huge numbers to turn up and the signs so far are not good.

Although it continues to take F1 to new locations, the FIA's determination to base its decisions on cash almost regardless of other factors - especially the local interest in the sport and the location of the circuits - have left the Formula One roadshow going to some places where grands prix take place against a backdrop of indifference. It's all very well to argue it is taking the sport into to new markets, but shouldn't consolidating the existing ones be equally important?

Assuming the organisers have a workable circuit by the time the FIA inspect later this month, the Korean Grand Prix will go ahead and contractually will remain on the schedule for the next seven years regardless. But you can't but help get the feeling that the hard work will really start when the builders leave.

Martin Williamson is managing editor of digital media ESPN EMEA

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-27-2010, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
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F1 teams concerned about Korea GP fate

News > F1 teams concerned about Korea GP fate - Motorsport.com

Racing series F1
Date 2010-09-27

By Motorsport.com/GMM

Two of F1's leading team bosses have admitted they, like F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone, have concerns about the forthcoming Korean Grand Prix.

On paper, there are four races left to run on the 2010 calendar, but real concerns that the new Yeongam circuit will not be ready to host its inaugural race on October 24.

The FIA rules require new tracks to pass a final inspection three months before their first race. But the governing body and Ecclestone have allowed Korea to delay its inspection until October 11 -- when air fares and hotels will be booked, and much of F1's freight en route to the east Asian nation.

Another crucial consideration is that whether there are 3 or 4 races left to run has an impact on how the teams – particularly those battling for the title – will approach the rest of the season.

McLaren, for instance, is hoping Korea stays on the calendar, given the points deficits of Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button.

"We would like four races but from what we hear there are a lot of concerns," said team boss Martin Whitmarsh.

"Bernie and the Koreans will work on that, and we will concentrate on going to the next race in Suzuka and maximising the points."

Red Bull, meanwhile, has a better insight than most about Korea, after Karun Chandhok recently completed a demonstration of the track at the wheel of an old F1 car.

"We were there a few weeks ago and they were well on course with it, so we're pretty confident," said Christian Horner.

"At the moment all the flights are still booked."

With Mark Webber leading the championship and his teammate Sebastian Vettel further behind, team boss Horner admitted his drivers have different opinions about the fate of the Korean round.

"Mark would say no (to Korea) and Sebastian would say yes, and obviously from a team point of view it (cancellation) wouldn't be a bad thing either," he said.

"But I think we'll definitely be in Korea.

"I had a chat with (Ecclestone) earlier -- he now seems pretty confident," added Horner
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-28-2010, 05:55 AM
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What a huge headache! I still think that building an F1 track in any remote area in any country will lead to a failure. The racing fans of today don't want a Woodstock!
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