Motor racing: Ban holds no fears for Ecclestone

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Legislation severely curtailing tobacco advertising and promotion of sports and cultural events in Canada could mean bad news for the Canadian Grand Prix. With numerous tobacco company sponsors, Formula One will be strongly affected when the legislation comes into effect in 1999. The Canadian government gave promoters two years to find non-tobacco sponsors. Such legislation is pending in a number of other countries on the F1 circuit.

"Currently there is a clause in all grand prix contracts which states that should legislation adversely affect the teams then we have the right to cancel the event," Bernie Ecclestone, head of the Formula One Constructors' Association, said. "At the moment, we have a lot more people who want races than we can accommodate."

n The Brazilian driver Rubens Barrichello, who joined the Stewart-Ford team from Jordan last year, is learning new languages fast. "Last year, I worked with a French engineer and we kept making mistakes in understanding each other," he said. This season Stewart-Ford are using the new Bridgestone tyres, which means the drivers are working with Japanese tyre engineers.