2006 Calendar a Challenge for Ecclestone

Formula One commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone is not ruling out the possibility that the British Grand Prix could switch dates as he continues to wrangle with problems over next year's calendar

The news that the United States Grand Prix will be held on July 2nd has led to increasing speculation in Brazil over the possible layout of the calendar for next season.

Ecclestone admitted the soccer World Cup finals are causing him a headache in finalising the dates and revealed in Brazil that there could be some major overhauls in the pipeline.

Asked about rumours that the British Grand Prix could be handed a June date, Ecclestone said: "Anything is possible. We are still sorting the calendar out and it is difficult.

"I am looking through the whole calendar, because it is difficult with the World Cup, all the matches, some starting three, nine, big confusion, and the Commonwealth Games too this year."

Speculation in Brazil centred around a possible race in Fuji, Japan, and Ecclestone would only say he "has a contract with Suzuka," which does not rule out the possibility of an additional contract with Fuji for a 'Pacific' race.

But general consensus is that the calendar is set to remain on 19 races despite the current provisional dates, released by Ecclestone earlier this year, totalling an unprecedented 20.

The United States race has been held in the middle of June for the last two seasons and its switch onto what is has been the date for the French Grand Prix has led to speculation over the Magny-Cours race moving to June.

That would possibly drag Britain into that area of the calendar, as those two races are usually back-to-back, but there are plenty of discussions yet to come before the final solution is found.

Jordan boss Colin Kolles admitted even the team bosses are getting confused and said: "To be honest we don't know what is happening. It changes all the time. It could be 19 or 18 races, we don't know yet. I think it will stay with 19."

The World Cup, which will be held in Germany, starts on June 9th and runs for a month, concluding on July 9th, and the current dates see three races - on June 18, 25 and July 2 - clashing with matches scheduled for that period.

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