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Wed 8 Jun 2011 04:52 PM

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‘Of course it’s not on’, says Bernie on Bahrain GP

Race cannot be rescheduled without green light from F1 teams, says Ecclestone

‘Of course it’s not on’, says Bernie on Bahrain GP
‘Of course it’s not on’, says Bernie on Bahrain GP
Bernie Ecclestone, Formula 1 commercial chief
‘Of course it’s not on’, says Bernie on Bahrain GP
Max Mosley. (Getty Images)

Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has said Bahrain’s reinstated Grand Prix cannot go ahead in October following a mutiny from the F1 teams.  

All but one of the 12 teams objected after the Grand Prix, first scheduled as the season-opener in March but postponed due to civil unrest, was rescheduled to take place on October 20.

“Hopefully we can return in the future, but of course it's not on,” Ecclestone said in an interview with BBC Sport. “[It] cannot be rescheduled without the agreement of the participants.”

At least 29 people were killed in political protests that gripped the Gulf island kingdom since February, prompting Bahrain to impose a state of emergency and call in Gulf troops.

The FIA’s decision last week to award India’s slot on the 20-race calendar to Bahrain and move the New Delhi race to 11 December sparked protests from teams, human rights agencies and senior F1 figures.

According to BBC Sport, the teams wrote to the FIA under the auspices of their umbrella group Fota to say they are opposed to the Bahrain race going ahead in 2011.

The letter says that the idea of adding a 20th race in December would be “unbearable to our staff”, the news outlet said.

The ruling body needs the approval of the teams before making changes to the racing calendar.

Max Mosley, former head of the FIA who left office in 2009, said earlier this week there was “not the slightest chance” the Grand Prix would go ahead.

"Until the written agreement of the teams is forthcoming, you can't actually change the date. It can't be done," Mosley told BBC radio.

Ecclestone said: ‪”Hopefully there'll be peace and quiet and we can return in the future, but of course it's not on. The schedule cannot be rescheduled without the agreement of the participants - they're the facts.”

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Mohammed Al Mahmood 8 years ago

Unfortunately, the Kingdom of Bahrain is continuously being attacked by either the Media or Officials on what is happening in the country.
The decision of hosting the F1 race is up to the FIA organizers, but continuous criticism of the country is what’s hurting us. We are in Bahrain and know exactly what happened in the Kingdom.
The word I send from Bahrain, we will be more than happy to accommodate and host the F1 race, and this comes from our welcoming Arabic heritage.

All Are Most Welcome.

IAN YOUNGMAN 8 years ago

Stop prosecuting doctors and nurses for treating protesters
Allow the world's media in to freely report
Stop detaining people illegally
Stop sacking protestors
Stop using motor racing as a political PR stunt

Then- and only then - should motor racing consider returning to one of the most boring circuits in the world with no atmosphere and few spectators.

ali 8 years ago

F1s was an opportunity for world media to come and see for themselves to whats happening on ground, rather than hearing the untrue stories from who do not want good for Bahrain. Just like the above reader, a blind guy.

graham 8 years ago

It would be interesting to know who is realy blind and who is wearing rose coloured glasses or brainwashed by there own biased media

Mohamed 8 years ago

I am also from Bahrain. I have no connections to Iran, but I do know that I am being suppressed. There is no equality here and i am regulary being bullied by the police and authorities.

Freedom is what I yearn for! A true democratic system, is that too much to ask for????

Mohammed Al Mahmood 8 years ago

My brother Mohamed,
What you have seen might be true to an extent. Together we
can overcome those issues and together, us the Locals, we can
become stronger.
Let us sit together and WE solve our issues.

Mohammed Al Mahmood 8 years ago

Mr. Young Man,
I don't understand why you are so hateful to his small Kingdom.
You attack our Government.
You attack our brave and loved Security forces.
You attack our award wining Circuit.

We are the citizens and are proud of our Government & Unity.
We continue to send our invitation to you, to visit the Kingdom
And see for yourself.

Jane 8 years ago

How can they spout cancelling the Bahrain GP due to human rights issues in Bahrain. These teams happily race in China which has the worst track record for human rights. Hypocrites the lot of them.

I am lucky to live in Bahrain and accept there are issues, but not so great as some of the other countries within the region and elsewhere. Have a look at the GP calendar and think about which of those countries hosting do not have human rights issues - I think you'll find not many.

Bahrain is a fledgling democracy but is leading the way within the region.

As Ian Youngman says, 'stop using motor racing as a political PR stunt'

And as Moh'd said 'all are most welcome'. Let the race happen and join us for some true Bahraini hospitality.

His Excellency Dr Paul 8 years ago

Fledgling democracy?

I suggest you get a dictionary and look up both words.

His Excellency Dr Paul 8 years ago

Just a heads up to the Bahraini sock puppet army currently flooding any forum discussing Bahrain... it would look far more convincing if you actually had a few dissenters.

Everyone around the world saw 10s of 1000s of protesters on the streets.

And yet I have yet to see one post from Bahrain in support of the protesters.

It all looks rather ominous.

Clue stick for you.... go to any 'free' country in the world, and you'll have no shortage of people willing to criticise the government. Go to North Korea and..... you won't.

Do you get it yet?