F1 teams have final say over Bahrain Grand Prix admits Bernie Ecclestone
Tuesday 10 April 2012
Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone today admitted teams would have the final say over whether they compete in the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Ecclestone was speaking after learning of the latest outbreak of violence in the troubled Arab state which saw seven policemen injured in a bomb attack.
Last year's Bahrain GP was postponed in the wake of anti-government protests that resulted in a number of deaths prior to it being cancelled completely.
And the 2012 event - race day is scheduled for April 22 - has been shrouded in controversy due to the continued clashes.
Ecclestone said there were commercial reasons why teams should take part but admitted he could not force individuals to participate.
"We've no way we can force people to go there," he told Press Association Sport.
"We can't say 'you've got to go' - although they would be in breach of their agreement with us if they didn't go - but it doesn't help.
"Commercially they have to go, but whether they decide to or not is up to them.
"I've had no-one say anything other than 'we're going to be racing in Bahrain'."
Although he was unaware of the details of the bomb blast which occurred in Eker, a Shi'ite village outside the capital Manama, he said, at this stage, the race was still on.
"Yes. If the people in Bahrain are happy that they can run the event," he said.
"We're not involved in any of the politics in Bahrain, over who is right or wrong.
"When you go to somebody's country you have to respect exactly how they run their country and the laws of that country.
"The National Sporting Authority in that country are the people who can say 'well, we think we'd prefer not to run the event'.
"The promoter can also say we don't want it because there is too much risk.
"We've an agreement with the FIA that Bahrain is a round of the world championship, and we've a contract with the promoters, but I want to make clear it's nothing to do with finance."
Before Bahrain there is a race in China this weekend and Ecclestone said he would be seeking talks with FIA president Jean Todt.
"I've spoken to Mr Todt, we keep in close contact, and he's going out there, so we'll have a chat then, and we always meet with the teams," he said.
Hector Bellerin: How saying no to Barcelona paid off for Bellerin - and Arsenal
Paul Scholes column: With Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
'I am the president of everybody': What Sepp Blatter said after winning re-election as Fifa president
Fifa bomb threat: Swiss authorities confirm a bomb threat has been made at the Fifa Congress
Michel Platini to consider pulling England and other Uefa members out of the World Cup if Sepp Blatter wins Fifa election
- 2 Maisie Williams has an excellent message for one confused fan
- 4 Tampon tax scrapped in Canada after petition convinces conservative government
- 5 Kate Moss on the naked Calvin Klein shoot and the obsession that ended her relationship
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
David Starkey 'tells Amal Clooney to shut up and stop over-promoting human rights'
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote