Bernie Ecclestone Hints At Turkish Grand Prix Return
F1 Supremo Bernie Ecclestone has hinted that the Turkish Grand Prix could make a return to the Formula 1 calendar, regarding Ecclestone and the race organizers can come to an agreement with regards to the race fee. It was this disagreement, coupled with poor crowd figures, that led to the demise of the race.
The Turkish Grand Prix was first held in 2005, and saw the McLaren of Kimi Raikkonen storm to victory. The circuit was designed by Hermann Tilke, and featured the daunting quadruple-apexed turn 8. Many drivers who raced around the Istanbul Park circuit regarded turn 8 as one of the trickiest corners of F1, mainly due to the load of 5g which the drivers pulled throughout the corner.
Throughout the 2011 season, it was announced that the Turkish Grand Prix would be dropped ahead of the 2012 season. This was mainly due to Bernie Ecclestone announcing that he would be doubling the hosting fee, which subsequently led to a disagreement, and the axing of the event. However, Bernie Ecclestone has stated that both he, the FIA and the teams are prepared to return to the Istanbul Park circuit once again.
“If we can solve this problem [with regards to the hosting fee], Turkey can return to the F1 calendar,” explained Bernie Ecclestone in an interview with Turkey’s Haber Turk newspaper.
However, Turkey is one of many nations striving to host a Formula 1 race. With nations such as France, Mexico and even Greece interested in hosting a Grand Prix, Bernie Ecclestone will have his work cutout keeping the season at a feasible amount. The F1 calendar is currently 20 races long, and with the addition of races in New Jersey in 2013 and Russia in 2014, the Formula 1 calendar could well be set to expand in the near future.
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