• Bahrain Grand Prix

FIA points finger at Ecclestone

ESPNF1 Staff
June 9, 2011 « Heidfeld targets Alonso scalp | »
Jean Todt and Bernie Ecclestone have been issuing conflicting reports about the future of the Bahrain Grand Prix © Sutton Images

The FIA has responded to FOTA's objections to the Bahrain Grand Prix rescheduling by stating it is Bernie Ecclestone's responsibility.

FOTA wrote to the FIA on Tuesday saying it was unhappy at the logistical issues caused by moving the Indian Grand Prix from its original slot and extending the calendar, as well as potential insurance problems. In an open letter of response, FIA president Jean Todt said that the governing had approved the changes to the calendar because it believed Ecclestone (the Commercial Rights Holder) had carried out all due diligence before submitting the proposal.

The letter read: "I would remind you that: The Formula One World Championship is regulated by the Concorde Agreement, the provisions of which supersede the provisions of the International Sporting Code (ISC). Under the Concorde Agreement, the responsibility to set the calendar and submit it to the FIA for approval rests solely with the Commercial Rights Holder (art 10 and Schedule 9 of the Concorde Agreement). Consequently, it is the responsibility of the Commercial Rights Holder to perform all necessary prior due diligence in order to secure his calendar proposal to the World Motor Sport Council."

Having attempted to clear the FIA of any responsibility for the change other than final approval, Todt called on Ecclestone to resubmit a calendar that addressed the teams' concerns.

"The FIA always has at heart the smooth running of the Championship and the interests of the teams, and is always prepared to address any issues, however difficult, in a constructive manner. I have listened to your last-minute objections and have asked the Commercial Rights Holder to re-examine his calendar proposal, and if necessary, to resubmit a revised proposal to the World Council."