Canadian government and Montreal officials have assured F1 fans from across the Atlantic that they will do anything in their power to save the Grand Prix. They also admitted that one of the reasons why Canada is no longer a desired F1 location has to do with a financial disagreement between race officials and Bernie.
"We understand that there is a contractual difference between Grand Prix du Canada and Mr. Bernie Ecclestone, between $10-million and $20-million. We must better understand the economic, the legal and the administration considerations before making a decision that will be financially responsible. We will do everything possible to save it" said Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay in a news conference on Tuesday.
Voices within F1 have already argued that the sport will suffer a great deal if it disappeared from the 2009 schedule. In a time of economical recession all over the world, missing out on the entire North American market may have consequences in the long term.
"We need to look at the north American continent situation from a more strategic point of view and work out how we increase our popularity. I don't think you can just look at one race – you have to look at the whole situation there and put together a package which increases our appeal in North America. Then, the financial problems we have appearing at just one race in the continent, will go away," Honda's Racing CEO Nick Fry was stated as telling the Autosport news yesterday.
The only way Circuit Gilles Villeneuve could officially return to F1 in 2009 would be if championship officials (meaning Bernie Ecclestone) and the teams agreed on getting rid of the traditional summer break between July 26th and August 23rd.