F1 to stay in Turkey says Ecclestone
13 March, 2010
Mar.13 (GMM) Bernie Ecclestone has played down rumours Turkey could be set to host its last grand prix in May.
It was rumoured recently that the Istanbul event, with Ecclestone as the leaseholder, would not have a long-term presence on the calendar, after a conspicuously small attendance last year.
F1 chief executive Ecclestone then told organisers, whose race was first held in 2005, that their promotion fee would be almost doubled to $26m per year from 2011.
But he has told the Financial Times that Turkey is staying on the calendar, despite only 36,000 attending the three-day event in 2009.
“It’s an enormous market in Turkey. Eventually they will get themselves sorted out,” said the Briton.
79-year-old Ecclestone also suggested that F1 is moving closer to filming the grands prix in high definition.
“If somebody guarantees to broadcast it we’ll do it,” he said. “We’re getting more people who are interested.”