Bulgaria is the latest nation to express a desire to host Formula One.
A new permanent circuit is projected, based on an existing motocross venue in the Dolna Mitropolya region. The site, located near the northern town of Pleven, about 100 miles from the capital, Sofia, is being developed to host a round of the MotoGP series in 2011, and the government also wants it to stage a Grand Prix.
“The talks with MotoGP and Formula One are one of the main priorities for our country,” said Rumen Petkov, who was appointed as the Balkan nation’s minister of the interior in June last year.
Dolna Mitropolya lies in the hills and valleys of the Danube, Iskar and Vit rivers and has developed recently into an attractive mountain resort area with renovated recreation facilities and new hotels, restaurants and nightclubs. It is best known for an air force academy and for leisure activities such as hunting, fishing, mountaineering and horse riding.
The existing circuit staged successful FIM SuperMoto events in July and October this year, and last week it was voted the top track by the FIM Congress in Johannesburg.
The Grand Prix project is being led by Vesela Lecheva, chairman of the state Agency for Youth & Sports; Georgi Ianakiev, president of both the Union of Bulgarian Motorists and the Bulgarian Motor Sport Federation; and Bogdan Nikolov, president of the Bulgarian Motorcycling Federation.
“It will be very difficult, but I think we will succeed,” Nikolov said while preparing a detailed proposal that will be submitted to the FIA and the Formula One group on Monday, Dec. 15.