The likelihood of the inaugural Korean Grand Prix
actually taking place later this season remains uncertain, with ongoing and persistent rumours that the track due to host the race will not be ready in time for its scheduled 24 October slot on the calendar.
It is understood that the tense political situation between North and South Korea has hampered construction work on the 5.62km Korean International Circuit
in Yeongam County, 400km south of Seoul, and whilst the sport's hugely influential commercial rights-holder Bernie Ecclestone – the man who inked the deal for the race to be staged more than three-and-a-half years ago – is adamant that the grand prix will
happen, it appears there is still a very real possibility that it will not.
South and North Korea are currently on the verge of major conflict after the former recently accused the latter of sinking one of its naval vessels, resulting in 46 deaths – with the North's response being to threaten all-out war, in which case, Ecclestone conceded, 'we won't be there obviously'.
The Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) is not willing to transport its equipment to Korea as long as the race remains a question mark, whilst teams have yet to make travel or accommodation arrangements, even though preparations for the subsequent Brazilian and Abu Dhabi Grands Prix are believed to be well-advanced.
Should the Korean Grand Prix
indeed be cancelled in F1 2010, it will mean a four-week gap between Suzuka and Interlagos – though Magny-Cours has been mooted as a potential late stand-in venue [see separate story – click here