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Ecclestone considers moving Australian GP to March 27

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Ecclestone considers moving Australian GP to March 27
By:
Sep 26, 2015, 5:37 AM

Formula 1 ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone is considering moving the Australian GP forward by a week as he attempts to finalise the 2016 calendar.

Scenic Melbourne skyline
Matteo Renzi, Italian Prime Minister with Bernie Ecclestone
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 and Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W06. 15.03.2015. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 1, Australian Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Race Day. - www.xpbimages.com, EMail: requests@xpbimages.com - copy
Melbourne skyline

The race is currently scheduled to open the season on April 3, but Motorsport.com understands that there is a chance that it could be moved to March 27 when the World Motor Sport Council ratifies the calendar in next week's meeting.

The complication is that that date also happens to be Easter Sunday, when many Melbourne residents would normally be going away for the weekend. It remains to be seen what impact that might have on attendance.

Impact on teams too

There would also be an impact on teams, who have already commenced with their carefully planned schedules of R&D, car build and crash testing, with the aim of being ready for a first test in Barcelona on March 1.

Either that test will have to move forward or the gap between it and Australia will have to shrink, leaving less time to finalise a Melbourne spec. Either choice will create some compromises.

It's not yet clear how other races will be moved around to make the calendar work and create a summer break, but Ecclestone is also believed to have looked at a triple-header in Europe.

One of the key issues is that Singapore does not want to be twinned with Malaysia, while the latter does not want to return to the start of the season.

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Australian GP
Location Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit
Author Adam Cooper