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Thu 9 Apr 2015 10:46 AM

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Bahrain Grand Prix faces 30% budget cuts

CEO of Bahrain International Circuit said last year was higher due to the race's 10th anniversary

Bahrain Grand Prix faces 30% budget cuts
(Getty Images)

Spending for the Bahrain Grand Prix has been slashed by almost 30 percent this year, it has been revealed.

The costs are down because of last year’s 10th anniversary extravaganza, Gulf Daily News reported.

Bahrain marked the 10th anniversary of the world famous event in 2014 by holding a night race for the first time.

Sheikh Salman bin Isa Al Khalifa, chief executive of Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) reportedly told the newspaper: “The budget this year is 27 percent lower than last year, but you have to understand that last year was the 10th anniversary, so there was more to do.”

However, he added the event would be just as impressive this year, with British pop band The Vamps performing this weekend at the BIC, and the new “Race Fever” advertising campaign whose launch featured the Red Bull Motocross X Fighters at Amwaj Islands last weekend.

“Race Fever is something new for us,” Al Khalifa was quoted as saying.

“It's a promotional activity to get early ticket sales, collaborating with Red Bull and other partners.”

“We’re trying to build a culture of people buying tickets earlier,” he added. “Bahrain is a last minute market - a lot of people buy tickets in the four days before the Formula One. The numbers just shoot up [then] – it’s crazy.

“But this year we held events earlier which people could only get into with their race tickets, so people bought tickets early."

He added that the biggest lesson learnt from last year’s night race was the need for more off-track activities, particularly for children.

“I am interested in seeing what the team can do next year with the same budget,” Al Khalifa said.

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