Lauda Tells Ecclestone to Give Up 2011 Bahrain GP

While F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone tries not to make any rushed decisions regarding the season opening Bahrain Grand Prix, others are already issuing verdicts on the tensed situation in the Kingdom. Triple world champion Niki Lauda insisted that the race should be scrapped from the 20-event schedule of F1 this year.

This is about democracy in a country,” Lauda said in a recent interview with the Bild newspaper, referring to the recent clashes between anti-government protesters and the local police in Manama a few nights ago. According to international media, at least 3 people were killed after the last violent clash in the city.

It would be wrong to suddenly burst into a sports event. We need to stay out of there,” he insisted.

While the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) will discuss the possibility of moving the last test of the off-season from Bahrain to some other venue – possibly Barcelona – between March 3-6, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone is likely to make a final decision on the running of the 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix next week.

After the GP2 Asia round in the country has been canceled yesterday, Dani Clos – a driver in the series – revealed in an interview with AS newspaper what his emotions were in the night the clashes occurred. His hotel was only some 200 meters away from the centre of the fighting.

After learning that we weren't going to race, the only thought was finding a way to get out of the country. And the sooner the better,” he revealed.

Talking about his plans for the Bahrain race, Ecclestone admitted that midway through next week a decision will be made, but hinted no one should make any traveling plans just yet.

We'll make a decision by Tuesday or Wednesday, (but) If you are making travel arrangements, I'd say don't. We may try to put it (Bahrain) on again later in the year,” he said.
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