Bernie Ecclestone Has Issued a Threat That Australia Could Lose Its 23-Year Association With F1
Australians are in close danger of losing the right to host a Formula One Grand Prix after 2010. F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone said to The Sunday Telegraph:
“Maybe we don’t want to be in Australia. Our costs are very high in Australia and we get a lot less money. It's bloody bad for us. We've got quite a few places on the list which would like to have Formula One and, as it seems your guy (Victorian Premier John Brumby) down there doesn't want Formula One, we can make him happy and make the other people happy.”
The Australian GP is said to have lost around €20.6 million during the last race there. Attendance numbers also drizzled to a low 301,000, reportedly the lowest since 1998. Ecclestone is also weary of Brumby who was not party to the agreement signed to extend Ausi’s participation in the F1 circus of motorsport to 2010. Most other countries are extended beyond this. Residents close to Albert Park where the track is assembled, have been known to voice disapproval of the races there. Australia’s loss would most certainly be the gain of someone else since a number of other countries are lining up to host Formula One.
Also preferred by Ecclestone is an Australian night race, similar to the one announced for Singapore. It would seem that far-from-GMT-countries will be paying the price for being naturally out of sync with European daytime zones. Will the US, Japanese, Indian and Canadian GPs also fall prey to the nighttime blues?