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Q&A: Red Bull Indianapolis GP.

Joie, would you comment, put a dollar figure on the construction for this new course. Then would you continue that into the economics of hosting a MotoGP event compared with a Formula One event.

Well, obviously, the investment we're talking about is significant. We're talking millions of dollars to make the improvements to get the track ready for MotoGP. Really it doesn't make sense for me to compare the two. For us, it's about adding world-class events to our schedule, and we're excited that MotoGP is going to be on there. If it didn't make sense for us, then I'm not sure we'd entertain the conversations. We feel very comfortable that it's going to be good for MotoGP, good for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway financially as well as good for the City of Indianapolis. We think there's a whole other clientele on the east side of the United States that will come to Indianapolis to be exposed to motorcycle racing, the highest form of motorcycle racing.

So whether you're a fan of motorcycles or a fan of the Speedway, I think we'll have that unique content that makes us special. But at the end of the day it has to work financially not only for our partners with MotoGP but for ourselves, as well.

Joie, why did you choose to, or why did you need to, revamp the infield course?

Well, obviously not that I'm the safety expert. We have our friends with FIM here. But motorcycles have different needs than four wheels. And probably the biggest thing is the runoff area. Obviously, concrete walls are not a good thing for gentlemen on motorcycles. So the ability to switch the road course, run it the other way, creating an opportunity of better runoff and safety areas. Some of the things that we're putting in, when you looked at that diagram, you can see what we're doing in Turn 1 to make sure that they have the appropriate runoff.

One of the things we don't do here, we do not compromise safety. That is very important to us. We have a world-class racing property. We would never do anything that wasn't to the highest standard. Whether it was the first rear-view mirror ever used on an automobile was here at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1911. To the use of helmets, to the creation of the SAFER Barrier, we want to make sure that the competitors enjoy their experience here and feel very comfortable racing to their fullest potential.

Mr. Ezpeleta, could you talk about a second race in the United States and how that helps MotoGP grow.

Carmelo Ezpeleta (Dorna CEO):
Well, the United States is the biggest, most important country in the world. Then we have been many years without being in America. And Joie explained clearly we are in the same position as Indianapolis and Laguna Seca, we can't risk safety. Once we realized this was possible, first Laguna Seca make a great effort at changing many things in Laguna during the last three years to achieve the possibilities to be there. And it's exactly the same. When we start to talk to Indianapolis in 2000, then we talk a lot. We are extremely happy to be here and to announce, because we realize how important Indianapolis is to the rest of the world. To have the possibility to have this collaboration with Indianapolis and to be one event interesting for Indianapolis. As Joie explained, it's interestingly also economically, we will make the effort to make this event with a lot of spectators, with a lot of interest.

For us, as Kenny said, America is big enough to have two events, for us is really, really important, this collaboration. And I also think one event will help the other. If one event is successful, the other event is also successful more than it was before. We have this experience in the countries where we were more than one time, and they are countries more than the States, Spain or Italy. Then we think it's very important to have two events, and enough surprising the times to make possible marketing both grands prix. But I'm sure the Indianapolis event will be important itself and also will help Laguna.

My understanding is the 125 and 250s are coming? Different to Laguna (where only the MotoGP class races)?

We'll, in Laguna like that was a different situation. But then when we start to talk with Indianapolis we decided to come with different categories. And with Laguna Seca we are speaking maybe in the future we will come with different categories.

Kenny, you said over in the Plaza that you probably hit 210, 215 mph on the front straightaway here. Would that be the fastest straightaway on the circuit?

China this year - I was in kilometers so I'm not sure of the speed in mph - was 320. So it's going to be one of the quickest. Certainly it's going to be the quickest or maybe possibly the easiest to make a mistake braking. Because in China you slow down to a first-gear corner, so if you're off line, you're off line by five or 10K, or six, seven miles an hour, then you run two or three bike lengths. But if you're doing 320K or 210 mile an hour and you miss the braking mark by 5 or 10 meters, then your speed that you're trying to slow down to versus the line you're trying to hit is going to be quite more significant. So I think it's going to be an interesting corner. And as long as the camber stays to where you can run it off and you don't have any type of camber change between the existing circuit and Turn 1, it's going to be an exciting corner and one that you can gain a lot of time on when you're behind somebody. Or one that you can really have an advantage on if you have a tire or a machine advantage. That should probably be one of the most exciting corners on the circuit.

Do you think this could possibly blossom into an Indianapolis bike week leading up to this?


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