Bahrain F1 race in Oct a mistake, says Brawn

Mercedes GP boss says move to push F1 season to Dec too much for drivers, teams
Bahrain F1 race in Oct a mistake, says Brawn
The Bahrain Grand Prix was scheduled to be the F1 season-opener on March 13, but was cancelled in February as protests spread across the kingdom
By Joanne Bladd
Mon 23 May 2011 09:56 AM

A possible plan to host Bahrain’s postponed Grand Prix in October
has been branded a step too far by Mercedes GP boss Ross Brawn.

The suggestion by F1 commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone
that the Indian Grand Prix could be pushed to a season-ending slot in December
to reinstate Bahrain would be an unacceptable stress on the teams and their drivers,
said Brawn.

“You have to remember they have been going since the end of
January," Brawn told sports website “I think to take them
through to December and then get them going again at the end of January, we
won't sustain it. We won't keep the people - they will get fed up, their
families will get fed up and it will all prove to be too much.”

India's first Grand Prix is due to be held at a circuit near
New Delhi, with Abu Dhabi and Brazil the last two races.

Speaking at the Spanish Grand Prix on Saturday, 80-year-old
Ecclestone said he was undecided over whether to reinstate the Bahrain race.

"Everything's possible. We could do [move the Delhi
race to the end of the season], yeah," he added. "I'm not sure at the
moment what I'm going to do. Everything's up in the air. I haven't decided
about it. We'll see if we have to go to Bahrain.”

The Gulf state was due to open the F1 season on March 13 but
the race was postponed because of civil unrest that has killed at least 29
people since protests started in February.

The Gulf kingdom's ruler said earlier this month that a
state of emergency, imposed in March after Saudi-led troops arrived to help
clamp down on protests, would be lifted on June 1, two days before a decision
is due on rescheduling the race.

Bahrain F1 authorities have also indicated they are ready to
hold the race.

“If it was up to us, we are ready," Zayed Rashed Al
Zayani, chairman of the Bahrain International Circuit, told "We
are happy to have it. We are ready to host it. But unfortunately it is not our
decision alone. There are many factors involved. We are hoping for the best and
would like to have the race back.”

For all the latest sports news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.