- One of the most spacious lakes in the world offers a great destination for athletes to compete and tourists to enjoy the scenic vistas
In developing its sports tourism potential, Indonesia holds many championships or sports events, and one of the closest is the F1 Powerboat (F1H2O) World Championship in Lake Toba, North Sumatra, on February 24-26. Lake Toba, one of the most spacious lakes in the world, offers a great destination for athletes to compete, and tourists to enjoy the scenic view.
Assistant Deputy for Sustainable Tourism Development at the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Kosmas Harefa, stated that the preparation for the F1H2O World Championship in Lake Toba reached 70 percent as of January 24. “It is expected that the preparations are in accordance with the target and all the main gates will have been completed by February 10,” Harefa said in a virtual gathering.
The F1 Powerboat is the world’s largest motorboat racing competition for powerboats, on par with Formula 1 or MotoGP. Harefa revealed that one of the facilities’ constructions, which is a centralized parking location, can accommodate three thousand to four thousand cars. “Currently, the Toba District Government, supported by the North Sumatra Provincial Public Works Office, has prepared a vast parking lot,” he added. According to him, the number of visitors is targeted to reach 20 thousand to 25 thousand, by promoting the event intensively.
Meanwhile, Minister of Youth and Sports Zainudin Amali said Lake Toba as the host of F1H20 is very ready to organize this activity, as proven by the venue readiness and other supporting facilities. “The government has prepared many F1 Powerboat post events, to support the economy of the Toba people,” Amali, who serves as the Chairperson of the F1H2O National Committee, said.
Lake Toba Cooler
He also ensured that the F1 Powerboat at Lake Toba will pamper the visitors, as he claimed the location is cooler than Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE), where the previous F1 Powerboat event was held on December 16, 2022. “In Sharjah, the venue was an artificial lake and the weather was very hot. This is very different from Lake Toba where the air is cool and not artificial,” he explained. He emphasized, the government has been preparing this event very seriously and hoping for support from various parties to make F1 Powerboat 2023 a success.
Moreover, he expressed hope that the F1 Powerboat implementation can result in the emergence of new water sports racing athletes in Indonesia. “We hope that this international event at Lake Toba can find new athletes and hopefully, they can excel,” Amali said. He added, the event can promote local micro, small, and medium enterprises and show the world’s trust in Indonesia in holding international events.
Unique to the world
State-owned tourism holding firm InJourney said that the F1H20 circuit in Lake Toba is the most unique in the world. “This circuit is quite unique because the track is on the lake. We have carried out the homologation (verification of the track’s safety), and the circuit length is 2.2 km. Its shape is unique because Lake Toba is a volcanic lake,” InJourney’s Marketing and Consumer Experience Director Maya Watono said on Wednesday.
Furthermore, InJourney President Director Dony Oskaria said that the F1H20 will involve the local communities. Oskaria explained, the shores of Lake Toba can serve as places for the spectators and local people are allowed to collect fees as long as they are registered as InJourney official partners. InJourney also involved 500 students as event organizers and will give them certificates.
Minister Amali said the F1H20 event can encourage Lake Toba as one of Indonesia’s super-priority tourism destinations, just as Lake Toba has gained the trust of the F1 Committee to host F1H2O for the next five years or until 2027.
By Kenzu Tandiah,
Ed: Rahmad Nasution
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