• French Grand Prix

Hollande scotches plans to revive French GP

ESPNF1 Staff
May 14, 2012 « Podium was possible - Kobayashi | Ferrari must not become complacent - Domenicali »
The big cheese? Bernie Ecclestone's plans could be scuppered by France's new president © Getty Images

Bernie Ecclestone may be the master of all he surveys but his announcement last month that the return of the French Grand Prix in 2013 was a done deal could turn out to be a little premature.

"The deal is done," Ecclestone told L'Equipe in April. "We agreed the financial terms with the sports minister David Douillet … for me, there is no doubt, we will sign it now."

The problem for Ecclestone is that his agreement was done days before Nicolas Sarkozy lost the French presidential election and his successor, Francois Hollande, is less impressed with the idea that central government should fund the plan.

Asked about the impact a change of government might have, Ecclestone said: "Whatever the outcome, I don't care. That's a local issue that doesn't concern me."

But he might be wrong. Speaking immediately before his election, Hollande said: "There will be a review [of the proposal]. They were too eager to back the French Grand Prix. I do not think the French state should be responsible for any financial outlay.

"There are enough issues to consider without spending tens of millions of euros on a grand prix."