Karun Chandhok not to race for Team Lotus in 2011 Indian Grand Prix. Narain Karthikeyan lone F1 driver from India
Karun Chandhok will not be driving for Team Lotus at the 2011 Indian Grand Prix. Team Lotus has made an announcement to this regard and has chosen to go with their regular drivers. This season, Karun Chandhok did drive at the German Grand Prix, where he started and ended the race at 20th place, and this participation raised hope for his inclusion for the Indian F1.
Team Lotus reserve, Chandhok will give it his best shot at the Friday morning practice sessionat the Buddh International Circuit prior to the qualifiers, and actual race. Team owner, Tony Fernandes has selected Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli for the Sunday race in the hopes of securing 10th place in the 2011 Constructor’s Championships, since the team has yet to score a point in almost two F1 seasons.
This would keep them affront of Virgin Racing and HRT, guarantee an increase in income, privileges, motor homes size, and of course, garage space. The latest development makes Narain Karthikeyan of Hispania Racing Team (HRT) the only Indian driver to compete at the inaugural 2011 Indian Grand Prix. In the 2010 Gran Prix season, Karun Chandhok, drove for Hispania (HRT) in 10 races.
Tony Fernandes had this to say. “…While I am sure there will be fans in India who want to see Karun race for us on Sunday we had to make the best decision for the future of the team.” “While all the emotional reasons for him driving were right we were conscious that the limited running he has had in the car this season … has not given him the best preparation for this race, so we have taken the very difficult decision not to run him in the race this weekend. ” “It is absolutely vital that we secure tenth place in 2011 to give us the platform to keep growing.”For that reason we had to take the pragmatic decision to put our faith in the experience and pace we have in Jarno and Heikki.”
Karun Chandhok had this to say. “I’m obviously disappointed that I won’t be on the grid for the first Indian Grand Prix.” “Everyone knows the most important and emotional race for any driver is their home race and particularly in my case, I’ve been involved with the project since the track was an empty piece of land.” “I’m sure it’s been a tough call for Tony to make and on some level I think he’s feeling some pain about it as we’ve always had a good personal relationship.” “The team has opted to go for experience at this time but I will go to the paddock in Delhi with my head held high because I feel I did everything possible in and out of the car especially over the last three months to show Tony that I can be in F1 in the longer term.”