Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Reporting from the Front

Today I am rather convinced that India is not exactly in a position to hold an F1 race on a street circuit.

No, I haven't joined forces with the Sports Ministry- sadly, we have people who cannot tell a sport when they see one. Seeing the length of the lines of cars jamming the roads of Singapore this week, however, I can't imagine a race through the roads in India, when it is already bursting at the seams and the traffic threatens to spill over into the tiniest crevice possible.

The lanes of the Marina Bay Circuit have been closed to general traffic this week, in preparation for this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix. Cars snake through the tunnels at snail's pace, and this is when you regret your decision to take a cab instead of the train that would have delivered you home in half the time. Now imagine blocking roads for a week in India. Of course, we have impromptu closures all the time, but then something of this magnitude, requiring the best possible infrastructure, is something I don't think we are quite ready to pull off at the moment. What an irony that many of the people working on construction and laying roads in Singapore are from India!

Living in Grand Prix country is a whole new experience. A week of excitement, an influx of tourists, F1 signs everywhere, designer boutiques more primmed up than usual, models of cars and art inspired by them. The thrill is palpable, and Singapore is glorying in the attention, notwithstanding the fiasco of last year's race and the Renault revelations.

Just one more day to Friday.

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