December 27 - Richard Cregan, who oversaw the establishment of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on the Formula One circuit, has been drafted in by organisers of the inaugural Russian Grand Prix at the Olympic Park in Sochi to help get the new event up and running in time for its debut in October next year.
Formula Sochi, which organises the event, has announced a three-year deal with Cregan and his consultancy company Rasgaira, which will see him lend his experience and expertise to delivering the new Grand Prix.
Cregan will also be stepping down from his role as chief executive of Abu Dhabi Motorsport Management, the company responsible for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the development of motorsport in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), after overseeing the first five races at the Yas Marina Circuit since its debut in 2009.
"Together we will make this a Grand Prix to remember for the people of Sochi and Russia," Cregan said.
"Moving on from Abu Dhabi was a tough decision for me but I have always enjoyed a new challenge and remain an advisor to the chairman and management there.
"I am convinced that the Formula One Russian Grand Prix will become one of the iconic events in the Formula One calendar and we will be able to build a very successful business by utilising the amazing assets and the passion of the team here in Sochi."
The Grand Prix in Sochi, scheduled for October 12, will mark another milestone for Russia as it will be the first time the country will have hosted a Formula One event and will come just months after the Black Sea Resort has staged the Winter Olympics and Paralympics.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Bernie Ecclestone, the President and chief executive of Formula One Management and Formula One Administration, signed a seven-year deal for Sochi to host the Russian Grand Prix in October 2010 and despite some fears over how preparations for the race would be managed along with preparations for the 2014 Games the inaugural race is set to be delivered on time.
Ecclestone visited the 5.9 kilometre Sochi track, designed by German Hermann Tilke, in February 2013 and was satisfied that preparations are on schedule.
Oleg Zabara, deputy general director of OJSC Centre Omega, the company responsible for promoting the event welcomed the appointment of Cregan and Rasgaira.
"The combined, impressive experience that the international consultants have, their understanding of the Formula One world, and the desire to do the F1 Russian Grand Prix at the highest level guarantee a good result of our teamwork," Zabara said.
"The knowledge and experience which we will get in the course of this cooperation will ensure not only the hosting of a world-class Grand Prix, but also effective use of the autodrome in Sochi all year round."
Meanwhile, Zabara has also met with representatives of FOM Cargo, the firm for the freight logistics, and customs formalities of the Formula One World Championship.
During the meeting Zabara and his colleagues discussed terms of cargo delivery for Formula One teams arriving in Sochi and FOM Cargo visited Sochi International Airport to evaluate its technical capabilities and loading equipment, while also meeting with several logistics companies.
"Speed, team play, accuracy and calculation are required not only for Formula One teams, but also for specialists who organise the race," Zabara explained.
"As a promoter of the Formula One Russian Grand Prix, we are responsible for the technical organisation for the project.
"One of the top priorities is to ensure the equipment delivery and to organise effective logistics and operational customs clearance of cargoes.
"The infrastructure required is an important aspect."
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July 2013: Sochi Formula One Grand Prix to take place October 19 next year
April 2013: Sochi Formula One circuit to receive Government financial help
February 2013: Ecclestone praises Sochi Formula One circuit at Olympic Park
November 2012: Sochi will be ready to host Formula One race in 2014, promises track designer
October 2010: Sochi to host Formula One after Putin signs deal with Ecclestone