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A significant milestone at Sochi

NEWS STORY
07/07/2014

Friday marked a significant milestone at Sochi, for there are now only 100 days to go until the inaugural Russian Grand Prix.

"100 days sounds like a lot of time, but in terms of organizing a Grand Prix, it is actually not," admitted circuit boss Richard Cregan, formerly boss at Toyota Motorsport and then Abu Dhabi Motorsport Management. "We have to be very efficient in the way we plan, the way we execute the plan and also we have to make sure that we give enough attention to detail to ensure that all the small points are completed. 100 days is a significant milestone event!

"I believe the most interesting part of any Grand Prix is always the first race," he continued. "That is difficult because everything is new - you have a new team, you have a new circuit, you have new procedures, some people have experience and some people do not. So you are trying to create a team that will deliver and be successful.

"There are also times in a project like this when you do not see anything happening, but actually there is, like the planning, the procurement stage, all of the training and preparation etc... Then suddenly you see things coming together, this stage is very crucial.

"Soon we will see things from an operational sense. The next stage is the training with RAF and marshals, and then the final step is when all the freight and personnel start to arrive from Japan, when the GP3 and GP2, cars start arriving then you will see that everything is really starting and the excitement comes and people realize: 'Yes. We are going to have a Grand Prix'.

"I think what it is exciting is to see how hard the team is currently working to achieve the end result. I think there are very dedicated to what they are doing and I believe that we will deliver a good Grand Prix."

Asked about the secret to successful management, the Irishman replied: "A major focus for me has always been about teamwork and communication. You have to make sure that you plan properly and then live the project, as a leader you need to ensure your team has the budget and tools to get the job done, only then can you demand success.

"I believe in two simple rules for success, that are very close and very related: attention to detail and "check, check, check". I can't emphasize that enough. When it comes to the week of the race that is when you'll be happy that everybody has checked everything three times to make sure it's going to be delivered, to make sure it is operational, to make sure it looks good. I have lived by that in every project I've done whatever it was - a rally, or Le Mans, or Formula 1 and at the Circuit in Abu-Dhabi.

"I've always believed that you deliver excellence through the team of people. You cannot do it alone, you cannot do it as an individual. And I think probably between now and the Grand Prix, from my side my priority is to help in terms of leadership and to help in transferring my knowledge so that people can run everything themselves, success for me will be looking back and seeing my friends at Sochi Autodrom become experts in the business and running one of the best motor sport venues in the world."

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1. Posted by Paul C, 08/07/2014 4:13

"Sure the the track is nearly ready. Are the hotels any better than they were for the Olympics? "

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