Sergey Vorobyev, the promoter of the 2014 Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix, commented on safety standards in the wake of F1 four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel’s several laps on Monday at the newly constructed racing circuit in Sochi.
Fresh from Sunday’s Belgium GP, which the German racer finished in the 5th place, Vettel is already visiting Sochi on Monday and took a serially manufactured car for several laps on the new racing track.
Vorobyov said the German racer took a serial car for the spin as it was against FIA regulations to use his racing F1 bolide before all teams arrived for the 2014 Russian Grand Prix.
“If Vettel used his racing car today, it would have been an obvious advantage over his contenders,” Vorobyov said. “It could have been followed by a penalty from the [International] Automobile Federation.”
Last week, a delegation from the International Automobile Federation (FIA), led by FIA Formula One Race Director and Safety Delegate Charlie Whiting, visited Sochi to inspect the track’s readiness for the Russian Grand Prix.
“The circuit in in extremely good condition and, yes, it will be issued with a [FIA] license,” Charlie Whiting told journalists following the inspection of the circuit.
“Everything has been done according to the plans - the kerbs are very good, the verges, the guardrails, the walls - everything is in an extremely good condition,” Whiting said. “Everything has been done to the highest standards and I'm extremely pleased. I can say without hesitation that the circuit is ready 60 days in advance, which is very rare really."
In February and March, the Russian resort city of Sochi hosted the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, which, according to international sports officials, athletes and visitors, were organized at the highest level possible and provided up-to-date infrastructure at all levels.
The Russian Grand Prix will be held at the racing track located near the Olympic Village in the coastal area of Sochi. The contract to include Russia in the calendar of F1 racing for the 2014-2020 period was signed in 2010 in Sochi by then-Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone.About three weeks after the contract was signed Putin, known for his avid support of sports development in Russia, gunned down a F1 bolide on a race track outside Russia’s second largest city of St. Petersburg.
In what can be called the ‘fastest president in the world,’ he reached a speed of 240 kmph (150 mph). His racing lap added to his previous motorized stunts, which included piloting fighter jets and strategic bombers as well as riding Harley Davidson motorcycles with Russian bikers.
Putin and Formula One chief executive Bernie Ecclestone met again in Sochi in the wake of the Winter Olympics, which ran between February 7 and 23. At that meeting F1 supremo Ecclestone suggested that it would be interesting to hold Sochi GP in the night time.