Formula One racing could be on the cards for Cape Town as early as 2017, according to reports by Eyewitness News and other local media. But, fans should not get too ahead of themselves, as there are a number of logistics that need to sorted before it’s a ‘go’.
Igshaan Amlay, CEO of Cape Town Grand Prix South Africa, has confirmed that he has been in talks with F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone.
We are in direct communication with Mr. Ecclestone. We’ve been given tasks by him and the most important one is to get the buy in from the major stakeholder – The City of Cape Town.— Igshaan Amlay, CEO of Cape Town Grand Prix South Africa
Kyalami hosted Formula One Grand Prix races in South Africa from 1967 to 1985 and returned for two races in 1992 and 1993. Picture: Motorsport South Africa Facebook Page.
Three things that need to happen before the F1 can come to Cape Town:
1. Pitching a proposal and securing the backing of major SA stakeholders
The Cape Town Grand Prix South Africa team will have to prepare a presentation for the City’s Tourism, Events and Marketing Directorate. According to the Cape Argus this is set to take place in August.
Amlay says that the team will need the backing of the City of Cape Town, as well as provincial and national government.
2. Negotiating and drafting the details
Once the team has secured the necessary support, Amlay says that they will have to embark on negotiations with the various stakeholders regarding the event hosting and how long it will take to prepare for the occasion.
He says that it is possible for the F1 to be hosted as early as 2017 if the City of Cape Town play their cards right.
3. Getting the buy-in of big spenders
The biggest challenge, it seems, is securing the financial backing to host the event.
Amlay says the costs will be covered by government and by private entities. He advises that the funding model will be discussed after the go ahead is given.
We are trying not to use government money. We are looking at outside investors as well and are in talks with some serious players.— Igshaan Amlay, CEO of Cape Town Grand Prix South Africa
Amlay projects that the infrastructure alone will cost between R400 -R500 million. He adds that the license fee is a separate expense that will be negotiated with Ecclestone.
Listen to the full conversation on CapeTalk's Breakfast with Kieno Kammies: