Force India’s persistence with foreign drivers has disappointed not just Indian motorsports fans but also the man who runs Formula 1.
Bernie Ecclestone is eager to see an Indian in a F1 car in the near future.
“I was hoping Vijay (Mallya) would give Karun (Chandhok) a chance,” Ecclestone told HT. “And I’m a little disappointed that he has put the Italian guy in… Whether he has to do this by contract I don’t know, but I would’ve liked to see Karun in the car for rest of the season.”
On Monday, F1 team Force India — part-owned by liquor magnate Mallya — picked Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi to replace Giancarlo Fisichella who has moved to Ferrari.
Ecclestone feels an Indian’s presence in the cockpit will help in the build-up for the proposed 2011 race in India.
“We need to get Karun in the Formula 1 car quickly,” he said. “And he has got the talent and the ability, so it’s a case of somebody just getting on and doing it now.”
On whether Chandhok — who competes in GP2 series, a notch below FI — is ready, Ecclestone said, “We haven’t seen him in a Formula 1 car to know but there’s no reason why he shouldn’t perform.”