Ecclestone unmoved by safety concerns in Bahrain as Force India pulls out of practice

Bernie Ecclestone remained unmoved about safety concerns in Bahrain on Friday - despite Force India's withdrawal from second free practice because of worries from its personnel about leaving the Sakhir track after dark

Ecclestone unmoved by safety concerns in Bahrain as Force India pulls out of practice

Amid concerns in the paddock about the situation outside the circuit - with Sauber now also confirming that some of its personnel witnessed an incident involving masked protestors on Thursday night as they returned to Manama - Ecclestone said it was not in his power to cancel the race.

"I can't call this race off. It is nothing to do with us, the race," he told reporters in the Bahrain paddock.

"We are here, we have an agreement to be here and we are here. The national sporting authority in this country can ask the FIA if they want to call the race off."

Ecclestone said he did not understand why Force India was so worried about safety - and that he had personally offered to drive with the team from the circuit if they wanted reassurance.

"They have asked and been told they can have security if they want it," he said. "I don't know if people are targeting them for some reason, I don't know - I hope not because none of the other teams seem to have a problem.

"So maybe they have had a message and are being targeted for something - it may be nothing to do with being in this country, maybe it is something else."

A Brazilian journalist confirmed that he too had witnessed police firing tear gas at protestors on the main road between the circuit and Manama on Thursday evening.

Ecclestone also reckons the huge media coverage the safety situation at the Bahrain event was generating was the result of journalists stirring things up.

"You guys love it," he told journalists. "What we really need is an earthquake or something like that, so you can write about that now.

"I think you guys want a story and it is a good story. And if there isn't a story you make it up as usual. So nothing changes."

shares
comments
Force India backs decision to go ahead with the Bahrain Grand Prix

Previous article

Force India backs decision to go ahead with the Bahrain Grand Prix

Next article

Force India downplays lack of running after pulling out of Bahrain GP practice

Force India downplays lack of running after pulling out of Bahrain GP practice
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Force India
Author Jonathan Noble
The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future Plus

The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future

The Formula 1 world reacted with surprise when it learned Lewis Hamilton’s long-awaited new Mercedes deal guarantees his presence on the grid only until the end of 2021. Both parties claimed publicly they were happy with the arrangement but, asks MARK GALLAGHER, is there more to it than that?

How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again Plus

How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again

Driver-turned-DJ Jaime Alguersuari lost his love for motorsport when he was booted out of Formula 1 just as he was starting to polish his rough edges. Having drifted from category to category then turned his back on racing altogether in 2015, he’s come full circle and is planning a return in karts for fun

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Plus

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Plus

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well-aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead on pace. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent Plus

Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent

While Japan's fever for motor racing is well-documented, the country has yet to produce a Formula 1 superstar – but that could be about to change, says BEN EDWARDS

Formula 1
Apr 15, 2021
Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration Plus

Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration

For too long, F1's richest teams have justified being able to spend as much as they want because that's the way they've always conducted their business. STUART CODLING says that's no reason not to kick a bad habit

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Plus

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is not guaranteed

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition Plus

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition

In 2017 new F1 technical regulations were supposed to add drama - and peg Mercedes back. STUART CODLING looks at the car which, while troubled, set the stage for the wide-bodied Formula 1 era

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021