Bernie Ecclestone on Saturday cast doubt on the health of formula one's new American team for 2010.

"No," he told the British broadcaster BBC in interview from Singapore when asked if he thinks 28 cars will really be ready to watch the five lights go out in Bahrain next March.

Alongside the current teams, new entrants including Manor, Campos, Malaysian-owned Lotus and Charlotte based USF1 are touted to contest the 2010 world championship.

"I think one or two might not turn up," the F1 chief executive said. "That's what I'm being told; possibly USF1 are a doubt."

Ecclestone, 78, also hit back at CVC commercial director Sir Martin Sorrell's criticism as he defended his belief that Flavio Briatore has been harshly penalised.

"Giving somebody life -- they don't even do that for murder," said the Briton.

Referring to his boss Sorrell, Ecclestone added: "Everybody is entitled to their own opinion and why should his be more important than mine?

"He's not involved in the sport. He doesn't know, he doesn't come to races, he doesn't know the people that are involved."


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