Deepika Padukone to be face of Mallya's Formula One Team

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Mumbai, Feb 11 (IANS) Industrialist Vijay Mallya, chairman of Force India Formula Team, has roped in actress Deepika Padukone to be the face of his team.

Deepika said, if she could manage time from her busy Bollywood schedule, she would love to be one of the team's 'speed divas' and travel around the world for the Formula One Grand Prix event 2009.

"I may make brief appearances during MTV's reality show, 'The Fast and the Gorgeous' and I'm looking forward to it," said Deepika as she sat on a McLaren-Mercedes-powered Formula One car to unveil MTV-Force India's The Fast and the Gorgeous hunt for the 'speed divas' here Tuesday.

Four 'speed divas' will be chosen from 20 contestants.

Deepika, daughter of badminton champion Prakash Padukone, loves sports and excelled in badminton in school.

Asked what is common between badminton and car racing, she said: "Speed".

Force India Formula One Team's maiden performance on the international race track last year was not up to the mark. "But to be qualified to take part in Formula One Grand Prix itself was no mean achievement," said Mallya.

Mallya, however, warned the Indian car race lovers not to expect "miracles" from the Force India Formula One Team during the prelims.

"The Grand Prix event from Barcelona onwards will be the real test for all the teams," he said.

Mallya, who took the initiative to put India on the international car racing track, said he will be a proud man when Force India Formula One Team will host the first Indian Grand Prix in 2011.

Ashish Patil, MTV India general manager and vice president (creative ad content), informed the media that the channel, which has always identified itself with the youth, is the right platform to popularise Formula One sport in India through its partnership with Force India Formula One Team for the reality show, "The Fast and the Gorgeous".

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