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European races must 'wake up' - Ecclestone

ESPN Staff
December 7, 2012 « Formula 2 cancelled for 2013 | Drivers aren't allowed to be characters - Ecclestone »
Races such as the French Grand Prix have dropped off the calendar in recent years © Sutton Images
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Bernie Ecclestone says the European races must "wake up" and work harder to keep their slots on the Formula One calendar.

While the FIA has just opened up another slot for a European race in 2013, the recent trend has seen new grands prix being added in Asia, the Middle East and this season America. Ecclestone said that his target remains to add a new venue to the calendar each year, and that while he is happy to hold multiple races in Europe the hosts must earn their spot.

"Yes. I suppose the next big thing will be Russia," Ecclestone told the official Formula One website. "Then we have to get this New York thing picking up again. There's lots of unfinished business - no time to waste one thought on retirement!

"Look at the Austin race: it was phenomenal. Everybody agreed that it is great that Formula One is back in the States. Maybe we'll get the Europeans to wake up instead of thinking that it (a race) is a God-given thing. When Europeans perform and do their job we are happy to stay."

Ecclestone also said that ensuring the racing is exciting is one of the key aspects for Formula One going forward. When asked what he'd like to change in the sport he replied: "Nothing really.

"We have to understand that we are in the entertainment business and this year we have entertained. All sports today are show business and it gets dangerous for a sport if people start to forget that."