Aero Formula-1 air race coming to Mumbai

August 3rd, 2011 - 11:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Harbhajan Singh Mumbai, Aug 3 (IANS) Around the year-end, Mumbai will witness the spectacular Aero-Grand Prix, which is popular as the Aero Formula-1 race by light aircraft, an official said.

The Aero-GP-2011, coming to India and Asia for the first time, will be co-ordinated for all non-financial aspects by Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation Ltd. (MTDC), an official from the Tourism Ministry said.

The race is likely to be held at Girgaum Chowpatty, according to the organisers, Eye India Innovative Media Ltd.

“There will be at least 6 or 8 lightweight aircraft which will fly around 50-feet above the water surface, racing in an area of 2 square kms, at a speed of 400 kms each,” Harbhajan Singh Sehgal, MD of EIIML told IANS.

As per tentative plans, Aero-GP pilots from Spain, Australia, UK and US, accompanied by their aircraft are expected to take part, but the participants are being finalized, Sehgal said.

Tourism Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, who gave the green signal for the Aero-GP-2011, said that it will be a treat for millions of sports-loving Mumbaikars who will witness the Aero-Formula 1 for the first time in the country.

“This aero-race will also put Mumbai and Maharashtra on the world adventures sports map in a big way and help boost tourism to the state,” Bhujbal remarked.

Besides the main race on the final two days of the 5-day event (including 3 days of practice sessions), the participants shall engage in aerobatics, air-combat, barnstorming and other thrilling exercises in mid-air, but around 50 feet above the Arabian Sea waters.

Pioneered in 2005 by UK-based Flying Aces Co., prior to Mumbai, the Aero-GP has been held in Abu Dhabi, UK, Romania, Malta, and Slovenia.

The entire event would be telecast live to over 50 countries worldwide through ESPN channel, and the race is expected to be held in late-November or early-December depending on various factors.

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