Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Jochem Heizmann, Member of the Board of Volkswagen AG with responsibility for Group Production, Volkswagen is proud and honoured that for the first time in the history of Indian motor sports, an international automaker has launched a racing series that encourages young talent of this kind. This is a very significant move by us in India by contributing to the development of a unique Indian motor sports culture. Volkswagen's motor sports activities are renowned globally and through this step we look forward bringing our technical knowledge and expertise to India.
Dr. Raghupati Singhania, Vice Chairman & Managing Director, JK Tyre & Industries Limited said, I feel very proud and happy to be here today as we witnessed yet another historic milestone in the Indian motor sport calendar. The debut of the Volkswagen-JK Tyre Polo Cup India, is a landmark event, for both Volkswagen and JK Tyre, who have a common passion to popularise motor sports. Its our privilege to partner with Volkswagen and create this defining moment.
Mr. Joerg Mueller, Volkswagen Group Chief Representative India, President and Managing Director, Volkswagen India Private Limited added, India is of high importance to Volkswagen. Ever since our launch in Pune, we have been made to feel a part of the great Indian family and blended into this beautiful culture. We would like to thank all the participants and each and every person who has taken an interest in the Polo Cup. This is our way of thanking the citizens of this country and especially of Volkswagen Indias hometown, Pune for accepting us and making us feel like we belong here. The responses we have got for the Polo Cup in India are overwhelming. This reinforces our commitment to India.
We are extremely happy and proud to launch Polo Cup for the first time in India. This moment is the true definition of happiness and contentment for us and I hope the motor sports enthusiast in India feel the same adrenaline rush as we do. Volkswagen has been associated with races and rallies all over the world and we are proud that we are creating history in India. Volkswagen has always encouraged young talent in motor sports. The drivers of the Polo Cup today will be the foundation of the Indian motor sports scenario tomorrow, expressed Kris Nissen, Volkswagen Motorsport Director.
The Polo Cup India 2010 will have six races in total with the 1st race being kicked off today at Shri Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Balewadi, Pune, the hometown of Volkswagen India. Races will take place each month upto December. The other five races will take place on the race courses in Chennai and Coimbatore.
-- 17/18 July 2010 at Coimbatore (Kari Motor Speedway)
-- 28/29 Aug 2010 at Coimbatore (Kari Motor Speedway)
-- 25/26 Sep 2010 at Chennai (Irungattukottai Race Track)
-- 27/28 Nov 2010 at Chennai (Irungattukottai Race Track)
-- 18/19 Dec 2010 at Chennai (Irungattukottai Race Track)
Over 1,100 motor sports enthusiasts from across the country registered to compete in the Polo Cup India 2010 and become a part of Indian motor sport history. After a strict selection process 20 young talents were chosen to form the starting grid in the first race in Pune. The selection process ran from the last week of March to mid of May. The aspiring racers were divided into 2 groups first-timers and experienced racers, and were put through two rounds of selection. The young racers were narrowed down to 45 drivers through an adrenalin-pumping go-kart selection. The short listed drivers were then placed behind the wheel of the Race Polo cars, for the second round of selections held in Coimbatore, to earn their place in the final 20 candidates for the races.
The candidates were selected with the support of the expert selection team. The team of selectors consisted of one driver selector & coach from Germany Polo Cup, two Indian driver coaches (experienced drivers from Volkswagen & JK Tyre) and one FMSCI representative, including some of the doyens of Indian motor sports like Akbar Ebrahim, Indias only principle instructor in racing, Farhan Vora, Indias guest F1 steward and Rayomand Banajee, six times National Champion. They personally followed the international structures and conducted the coaching camps to select the best young talent.
Motor sports enthusiasts interested in getting further information can log on to the website, www.polocup.in. This website will display information about the format of The Polo Cup India, race updates and driver profiles.