2014 Winter Olympics Could Delay Russian GP

Russian PM Vladimir Putin agreed with Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone upon the F1 debut of the Russian Grand Prix in the year 2014. Obviously, the news came as a boost for the latter, especially since the 2014 date coincided with the year in which the city of Sochi – the same place where the F1 race is due to take place on an yet-to-be-constructed circuit – will host the Winter Olympics.

However, the latest developments of this story come to cast a shadow of doubt over the possibility of Russia joining the Great Circus as a host at the initially established date. According to International Olympic Committee (IOC) spokesman Andrew Mitchell, it will be practically impossible for Sochi to host both events in the same year.

We want to ensure that both events - the Olympic Winter Games and the Formula One race - will be staged on the best conditions for all the parties involved. However, we believe that it is impossible to organize two events of such size in one year,” said Mitchell in a recent interview with the Sovetsky Sport newspaper.

At the same time, Russia's Federation of Motor Sports and Tourism vice-president Igor Ermilin confirmed for the Russian media that thorough documentation on the exact F1 plans for 2014 – including the construction schedule of the soon to become F1 track in Sochi – will be submitted to the IOC in order to “understand the critical moments” of the 2010 Russian GP preparations.

The IOC wants to make sure that the Olympics won't fail. That's why they are worried,” said Ermilin, according to a report from the GMM news agency, citing media sources from Russia.
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