Date: 9th June 2011 at 10:14am
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If you’ve got lost with whether the Bahrain Grand Prix will be taking place in 2011 or not, it isn’t surprising.

The original curtain raiser to this seasons Formula One World Championship was originally scheduled in March, but due to political unrest in the region the event was eventually cancelled, with the opening race of the season taking place in Australia.

Formula One Management and the FIA appeared to want the race rescheduled and last week an FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting voted unanimously to change the current Formula One calendar to make room for the event.

The announcement included moving the Indian Grand Prix from October 30th to either December 4th or 11th, with the Bahrain Grand Prix to be held on the October date.

But while FIA president Jean Todt and vice-president Carlos Gracia were positive it was the correct decision, the fans, media, drivers and crucially the teams thought otherwise.

‘I think it’s a grave error to reintroduce the race for a number of reasons. They really should have kept it off this year’s calendar.’ BBC F1 commentator Martin Brundle told BBC Radio 5 live.

‘A lot of people would be happy to accept it on the calendar for 2012 provided they have sorted out the problems there.’

While the Formula One teams have not spoken publicly on the subject, FOTA [Formula One Teams Association, which includes all the teams with the exception of Hispania] have written a letter to the FIA expressing their objection to the Bahrain Grand Prix being rescheduled on logistical grounds.

Article 66 of the FIA’s Sporting Code states that no amendments to the schedule can be made without agreement of all competitors, which considering the letter stating their objection is pretty clear the FIA do not have.

So it would seem pretty obvious that the Bahrain Grand Prix will not go ahead and the Indian Grand Prix will happen in October as originally scheduled.

Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone told the BBC: ‘Hopefully we can return in the future, but of course it’s not on [this year],

‘The schedule cannot be rescheduled without the agreement of the participants – they’re the facts.’


An FIA senior insider described the oversight to the BBC as ‘extraordinary’ and it is pretty difficult to argue a case against that view!

So Formula One now moves into farcical territory with a decision announced last week technically still official as the FIA voted on the changes, but technically rejected by the FIA’s own rules.