Seoul, Korea - South Korea's introduction to the world of Formula 1 was nothing short of spectacular, with just about every element of what has made this the pinnacle of the sport contained in 55 laps of non-stop drama. Despite the inclement ...
Seoul, Korea - South Korea's introduction to the world of Formula 1 was nothing short of spectacular, with just about every element of what has made this the pinnacle of the sport contained in 55 laps of non-stop drama.
Despite the inclement weather, more than 80,000 spectators turned out for the 2010 FORMULA 1 KOREAN GRAND PRIX, proving motorsport has now truly arrived in South Korea. The event was hailed as a resounding success, with Ferrari's Fernando Alonso storming to victory in the nation's inaugural Grand Prix.
Promoters, the Korean Auto Valley Operation (KAVO), which also developed the region's - and the world's - newest state-of-the-art motorsport facility, believe hosting the Grand Prix has been the perfect start to their plans to develop the sport in the country.
Said KAVO Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Korea Automobile Association (KARA), Mr. Yung Cho Chung: "We are delighted at the success of the 2010 FORMULA 1 KOREAN GRAND PRIX, and the enormous, enthusiastic crowd has proved the sport already has a strong fan base here. We have overcome several challenges over the last few months, but our work is just beginning. The KIC is an important new facility for regional and international competition, but also one from which we will both develop the sport from the grass roots, and build a motorsport business and tourism hub."
Next up for the KIC is the international Korea Formula 3 Superprix, to be held from November 26-28. The world's leading Formula 3 drivers, all of whom have their sights fixed on a future seat in Formula 1, will arrive in Korea straight from the Macau Grand Prix. The event will be the season-closer for Formula 3, and represents a final opportunity for the leading drivers from the various championships to compete with each other in an end-of-season grand finale.
Said Mr. Chung: "The KIC will continue to host international, regional and domestic events year-round. It's fantastic for us and for the fans to open the facility with a round of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship, and then to follow just a month later with a prestigious international junior single seater shoot-out."
The Korea International Circuit is designed as a dual structure: the 5.615km Formula 1 track, which will include elements of a street circuit and has one of the longest straights of any track, and a shorter, permanent circuit of 3.045km.
The state-of-the-art motorsport facility is the country's first motorsport to meet Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) Grade 1 standards.
The track was designed by the world-renowned Hermann Tilke, and incorporates local elements such as the roof of the main grandstand which resembles the eaves of traditional Korean 'hanok' houses. A total of 170,000 spectators are accommodated at the circuit, with 16,000 seats in the main grandstand.