Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone expressed delight with the progress of the Sochi Olympic Park Circuit during a recent visit to Sochi to meet with Russian officials. The 5.8-kilometer circuit is being built as an integral part of the Black Sea resort's Olympic park, which plays host to the 2014 Winter Olympics and Paralympics.
Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Dmitry Kozak was also present to inspect the Formula 1 circuit construction site in the Olympic Park along with Krasnodar Region administrators and officials of Formula Sochi.
“It’s a fantastic track. I was here before the building work started on the track and I was already impressed then. Now, I’m super-impressed with what’s going on here,” Ecclestone said.
After the tour, Ecclestone met with Russian President Vladimir Putin who likewise expressed his delight with the progress of the circuit.
“A big section of the Formula One racetrack is ready now. As far as I know, of the overall 5.6 kilometers, 3.6 have already had the asphalt laid. True, this is still not the last layer to be laid, but the work is making progress in the right direction, and I think we should be able to hold the first races in late 2014, as we planned,” said President Putin.
“I must say I am very impressed with what’s actually been built up to now. It is going to put a few countries to shame, I am certain. Especially for the Olympics, I’ll feel sorry for my friends in Brazil when they see what you’ve built,” said Eccelstone.
With the Formula One race being held at the Olympic park, Russia will get to maximize the use of the infrastructure for other sport activities after the Olympic games.
“It’s nice to see that Russia’s planned ahead what all the units are going to be used for. Most countries build with no idea of what is going to happen to it afterwards. And it seems that’s quite the opposite,” added Ecclestone.
“Everything here will be put to good use, at least this is certainly my big hope. Right from the start, even before the construction work began, we already planned how we would use the facilities in the future,” said President Putin.