Shanghai to host F1 for seven more years - city officials

SHANGHAI Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:20am IST

Race officials place position numbers after the qualifying session of the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at Shanghai International Circuit April 17, 2010.  Shanghai has extended its deal to host the Chinese Grand Prix for seven more years despite falling attendance, organisers said. REUTERS/David Gray/Files

Race officials place position numbers after the qualifying session of the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at Shanghai International Circuit April 17, 2010. Shanghai has extended its deal to host the Chinese Grand Prix for seven more years despite falling attendance, organisers said.

Credit: Reuters/David Gray/Files

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Shanghai has extended its deal to host the Chinese Grand Prix for seven more years despite falling attendance, organisers said.

The city will continue hosting the race until 2017 and organisers said they will lower ticket prices, among other measures, to attract more spectators.

"F1 is a calling card for Shanghai," vice-mayor of Shanghai Zhao Wen told the Shanghai Daily newspaper on Wednesday. "I am confident about the success of the event in the years ahead."

The Chinese Grand Prix attracted some 260,000 spectators in its inaugural year in 2004 with a slight 10,000 increase in 2005, but attendance has since declined with 155,000 attending in 2010.

"We've learnt that high ticket prices have led to fans staying away, and will try to improve the situation in the following years," said Chen Yiping, deputy director of the Shanghai Sports Bureau.

Prices for prime seats range from 1,980-3,280 ($300-$498)yuan this year, compared to 3,580-3,980 yuan last year.

A train station near the circuit will also be opened on the metro line for better access.

The Chinese Grand Prix will be held on April 17, while the first race of the new F1 calendar is scheduled for Bahrain on March 13, though civil unrest in the Gulf state has prompted fears it could be called off.

(Editing by Greg Stutchbury; To comment on this story email

sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)

Sports Wrap

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Lakhvi's Bail

Lakhvi's Bail

Pakistan court bails man accused of masterminding Mumbai attack.  Full Article 

PM's Moves

PM's Moves

Modi moves in to speed up $300 billion stuck projects.  Full Article 

Coal Unions

Coal Unions

Coal India workers threaten five-day strike, stokes output worries.  Full Article 

Space Programme

Space Programme

ISRO tests its heaviest space launch vehicle, eyes global market.  Full Article 

Peshawar attack

Peshawar Attack

Some Pakistan militants denounce school attack, amid national outrage.  Full Article 

Uber Again

Uber Again

Uber driver in Boston charged with kidnapping and rape.  Full Article 

Discounts

Discounts

Dealers offer gold discount for first time in five months.  Full Article 

"PK" in Cinemas

"PK" in Cinemas

Secret of year's "biggest" Bollywood film is its plot.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device   Full Coverage