The Madras Motor Race Track, more commonly known as MMRT, is a racetrack which is located in Irungattukottai, Chennai. The track was inaugurated by motor racing legend, Sir Jackie Stewart in 1990 and is India’s first permanent racing circuit.
The track has been renovated over the years with new asphalt and a new paddock, while full dirt track currently under construction. A new development in the history of Indian motorsport has surfaced as Vice President of the Madras Motor Sport Club, Vicky Chandhok has said that the body is evaluating night racing at the track.
Unlike Grand Prix tracks like Bahrain, Marina Bay or Yas Marina which are fully lit tracks for Grand Prix racing with Formula cars, the MMRT will focus on endurance racing format which will only see sportscar racing with headlights, similar to World Endurance Championship (WEC) and Le Mans where there are only enough lights for the marshals to spot the cars properly. In the night races, headlights will become mandatory allowing Indian Touring Car or Saloon car races being held at night.
The race track near the outskirts of Chennai will go under evaluation on August 7, 2019, to conclude if the track’s infrastructure is capable of hosting such events in a safe manner. Chandhok said that this will create the possibility of an endurance racing series for cars, in a similar fashion to the 24 hours of Le Mans. To make the old-school challenging race track even more interesting, the track will also try and accommodate an anti-clockwise direction. To make this possible, 56 changes to the circuit will need to be made to the safety barriers and Armco to comply with the safety standards as mandated by the FIA governing body.