Following this past Sunday's race in China, F1 head-honcho Bernie Ecclestone flew down to South Korea to sign a seven-year contract for the addition of a Korean Grand Prix. The races are to be held at the Korean International Circuit currently being planned for Yeongam in the south-western province of South Cholla, about 240 miles south from Seoul (read: far from the DMZ). The 5.45-kilometer track will start construction next year and should be done by 2009, with the first race scheduled for 2010.
Formula One has been shifting away from its historically Euro-dominated tour, with more and more races in Asia. China, Japan and Malaysia all host grands prix (with Australia just southward down the Pacific). Turkey and Bahrain (closer to the Middle East than the Far East) are two of the most recent additions to the calendar, while European races are being cancelled, and more Asian locations – including Singapore and India – are rumored to be under consideration.