We’ll have an Indian driver racing in the 2012 Formula1 Championship season as Narain Karthikeyan has just bagged a drive with the Hispania Racing Team. The second driver spot in the Hispania Racing Team was the only unfilled racing position in the 2012 Formula1 grid, and now Narain is all set to make a comeback into Formula1 alongside Spaniard Pedro De La Rosa. The third driver for HRT will be Vitantonio Liuzzi, who will continue with the role of a reserve driver for the 2012 season. Narain Karthikeyan brings close to 8 Million Euros in sponsorship for the race seat.
Tata Motors, one of Narain’s principal sponsors are said to have put together a bid for the single vacant racing seat in Formula1, at the very last minute, thus giving 35 year old Narain another stab at the the highly competitive Formula1 motor racing championship, which many call the pinnacle of motor racing. Narain Karthieyan is expected to announce his place in Formula1 at a press conference to be held later today. Also, the Indian motor racer is expected to complete the full season in 2012, unlike last season, where he had to sit out mid season due to the lack of sponsorship.
Inability to cobble together enough sponsorship is often a reason why many Indian Formula1 hopefuls have struggled to bag a seat in Formula1, a sport that continues to be driven by money as racing budgets are sky high. It happened to Karun Chandhok, another Formula1 driver who was Team Lotus’ test driver in 2011. Karun Chandhok will now drive in the 2012 World Endurance Championship. This is another reason why motorsports is still a fledgling in India, a country which got its first Formula1 track in 2011, a race which it hosted successfully last year.