French lose grand prix

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The Independent Online

The French Grand Prix has been removed from the 2004 Formula One calendar, according to organisers.

The event, held at the Magny-Cours circuit, is in financial difficulty with organisers owing the Formula One impresario, Bernie Ecclestone, £6m in sanctioning fees. But Roland Hodel, who runs Magny-Cours, insists that the race will return in 2005.

The removal of the race - the site of the first-ever grand prix - would trim the calendar to 17 events after Canada was reinstated recently.