F1 team principals want Bahrain cancelled


Red Bull | Getty Images
9 April 2012 by Ryan Wood | M
          

In a very revealing interview, a leading team principal has admitted that he and the remaining 11 other team principals share the same view - that the Bahrain Grand Prix should be cancelled.

As reported yesterday by The F1 Times, teams have made contingency plans in the event that the race is called off. Such a decision isn't expected until the last minute when FIA president Jean Todt meets with all 12 team principals in China next weekend to discuss the matter.

However, this team principal, who shall remain nameless, admits he is hoping the race is cancelled or at least postponed until later in the year.

"I feel very uncomfortable about going to Bahrain," he told the Guardian. "If I'm brutally frank, the only way they can pull this race off without incident is to have a complete military lock-down there. And I think that would be unacceptable, both for Formula One and for Bahrain. But I don't see any other way they can do it.

"We're all hoping the FIA calls it off," he admitted. "From a purely legal point of view, in terms of insurance and government advice, we are clear to go. But what we find worrying is that there are issues happening every day."

According to the source, his view is echoed by the majority of the grid as they look to ensure their staff are protected in the event that anything untoward happens.

"Other team principals are going through the same worries. I spent all last week making sure the insurances are right so I can reassure the team. I've sent out an email to our legal department to make sure all our employees are covered for acts of terrorism and civil disorder while travelling to, during and coming back from the Bahrain GP.

"We have a lot of people. Our first and foremost priority has to be our employees. And their families. That's what concerns us most, even though we've not said anything about it. It seems to me that while there has been some political progress in Bahrain they're not quite ready. The best thing would be for the race to be postponed until later in the year, or even cancelled," he continued.

"But that is a decision that must be made by the FIA, FOM [Formula One Management] and the commercial rights holder. I never anticipated a decision being made until the week before China. I believe Jean Todt is in China, which is interesting."

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