The World SuperbIke Championship India debut was scheduled for March 10. Unfortunately, the organisers have now confirmed that the India round of the 2013 season has been moved to November 17, now making it the last round of the season. Apparently the dates have been moved due to insufficient time to train the marshals and medical staffs for the race track.
FIM officials will be visiting the Buddh International circuit on January 19 to have the final inspection of the track. They will also be educating the Indian race officials through seminars on the various important aspect of this event.
Indian round of WSBK is already in trouble with the customs authorities and we believe this is the main reason for the delay. The Indian customs wants the racing equipment including bikes, spares to arrive in the country 15 days in advance, along with deposit amount which is equal to the value of their equipment’s which is hundreds of thousands of dollars.
This is not the first time that Indian government body has played a spoil sport for international events. The first edition of the Formula 1 faced similar hurdle, in fact customs had also raised an issue over bringing the 2011 cricket world cup display trophy to India.
The support for both cricket and F1 were much higher and the events took place on schedule after political intervention. WSBK is not that fortunate and it seems that FIM is now forced to change dates till further discussions. It is high time that the derogatory policies in India change and sports ministry needs to take onus and talk to customs for smooth running of such mega events. The only issues is that, this is the same body that called Formula 1 an entertainment event was unwilling to recognize it as competitive sport.