The city officials – Quebec minister Raymond Bachand in particular – insisted last week that the Canadian Grand Prix will not be able to make it to next year's schedule unless a private investor would step in and help organize the race. The main reason why Canada was axed from the 2009 F1 calender was because of the increasing debts towards FIA from the last couple of years.
Montreal mayor Gerald Tremblay, Canadian federal minister of international trade Michael Fortier and a local Quebec minister met with Formula 1 supreme Bernie Ecclestone in London last week to discuss the possibility to reinstate Canada in next year's schedule. An opening date was already made available after Magny-Cours retired from the 2009 calendar due to financial difficulties.
The Canadian government also insisted that, should it become financially correct to support the race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve from the taxpayers money, they will proceed in doing so for the upcoming seasons. However, an investor from the private sector would make things easier for the organizers as the Canadian Grand Prix will also have to cover for their existing debt to FIA (around $10 million).
Curiously enough, NASCAR might be involved in rescuing the Grand Prix in 2009, as team owner George Gillett has been linked with becoming a potential investor alongside Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte.