Ecclestone attacks Belgian politicians

Belgium's anti-tobacco politicians have come under fire from Bernie Ecclestone. The F1 impresario told Le Soir newspaper: "I really don't know what's going on with the Belgian politicians. Most countries are supporting their GP. If there are problems, they try to find a solution with us. But in Belgium just the opposite is happening. Every year I fight with the Belgians for their GP. It seems as if we have reached a moment when they don't want their GP any more."

Ecclestone attacks Belgian politicians

Ecclestone is frustrated by new Belgian legislation, which bans all tobacco advertising from August 2003. The government has refused to allow an exemption for the GP.

He added: "What is expected from the Belgians is just the same as from their German colleagues. In Germany, tobacco advertising is forbidden as well, but there we found a solution. We've guaranteed that there won't be any tobacco advertising in connection with F1 from 2006. Even if we race in China. But there are other things to think about, like this politician who has insulted me." [In a debate, Belgian MP Josy Dubié allegedly called Ecclestone "a gangster."]

"It's unpleasant to race in a country were you're not welcome," Ecclestone concluded. "In this case, I'm preferring to race in another country."

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