We haven’t had a night race yet, the first isn’t due to take place until the Singapore round later in the year, but it seems as though Bernie has the bit between his teeth and is insisting that any race broadcast outside of European daytime hours needs to be staged at night. This recent push comes after Ecclestone threatened Australia again, bringing to the fore the fact that despite originally lobbying the idea of night racing, Albert Park organisers are now not so keen on the idea.
It seems as though Bernie has given the Australian Grand Prix an ultimatum: stage a night race or leave when your contract expires in 2010. According to Australian Grand Prix CEO, Drew Ward, the start time has already been shifted back to 3.30pm local time; something I wasn’t aware of but admitedly a welcome adjustment. However, despite being thankful of an extra couple of hours under the duvet, I do not agree with Ecclestone statements, the 77 year old just showing how out of touch with his own sport he really is.
The only way the race could stay in Melbourne, or anywhere else in Australia, is if it is staged during the night so that the public in Europe can watch it. Bernie Ecclestone.
When, for the love of all that goes fast, will Ecclestone realise that this sort of political maneuvering only further damages Formula One. I am European, I live in the UK, and one of my fondest of memories as a youngster was waking up at 5am and going downstairs to watch the Australian and Japanese races. And although I’m now much older and less keen to wake up at silly-o-clock, I would still do it, every single time.
We know that regardless of what happens beyond 2010, we have got a great event coming up in a week’s time. There is also 2009, and 2010. And whatever happens beyond 2010 will sort itself out. Drew Ward.
The fact is, I want an Australian Grand Prix. Australia wants an Australian Grand Prix. And Europe, just like the rest of the world, will still watch the Australian Grand Prix. For crying out loud Bernie, grow up.