Bahrain GP Organisers Given May 1 Deadline Decision

March 9, 2011

Bahrain Formula One grand prix organisers have been given until May 1 to decide whether or not they will be able to stage the race later in the 2011 calendar after postponing the scheduled season opener over safety fears.

The race was originally set for coming Sunday, unhealthy but the Kingdom of Bahrain last month withdrew from hosting the opening round due to the instability caused by a political uprising in the country. The opening race of the campaign will now take place on March 27 in Melbourne, medical Australia.

Following a meeting of the World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) in Paris on Tuesday, March 8, the FIA, motorsport’s governing body, released a statement to confirm that the Bahrain Motor Federation has been instructed “to communicate by May 1 at the latest if the Bahrain Grand Prix can be organised in 2011”.

Formula One Management (FOM) chief executive officer Bernie Ecclestone has previously indicated his willingness to seek a new date for the Bahrain race, and last week he said: “If they want the race then we want to be able to supply it for them. If there is peace in Bahrain, we will be there.”

A release on the FOM website stated: “On May 1 Bahrain’s Crown Prince – HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa – is expected to inform the FIA about the possibility of hosting a race in the country, and then together with Formula One Management, the FIA will make a final decision about a new slot for the race during the 2011 season.”

The statement added: “Formula One group CEO Bernie Ecclestone had hoped a new date could be settled on before the season got underway, but given the circumstances, it was mutually agreed that a final decision would be made in May.”