The Bahrain Government and Bernie Ecclestone today clarified speculative media reports about the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix and its venue, the Bahrain International Circuit. Recent stories on the status of the race have included suggestions ...
The Bahrain Government and Bernie Ecclestone today clarified speculative media reports about the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix and its venue, the Bahrain International Circuit.
Recent stories on the status of the race have included suggestions that current terrorist threats across the Gulf region will have a negative impact.
This was refuted when the Bahrain authorities received a welcome endorsement for the status of their race from Bernie Ecclestone, President of Formula One's commercial controlling organisation Formula One Management.
"We have a long-term agreement with Bahrain to organise the Grand Prix. We are extremely serious about our commitment in the Middle East and fully support the addition to the FIA Formula One World Championship. Nobody is immune from terrorist threats and I know how seriously the authorities take such claims. Neither the circuit nor we have received any such threats," said Mr Ecclestone.
He continued, "Having visited the new circuit late last year I have seen that the construction work is ahead of schedule and that we are on target for the first Grand Prix in the Middle East."
Government officials in the Kingdom of Bahrain are also quick to refute media speculation. "Nobody is immune from threats. The entire Middle East region is a victim to them and we take all such claims very seriously. However, Bahrain takes its national security as a matter of paramount importance and is working very closely with its regional and international allies to minimise any risk" said a BIC spokesperson.
Answering speculation about the status of construction work at the circuit, the spokesperson said, "The construction work at the circuit is 89% completed. The final layers of tarmac will be laid within the next three weeks. All of the necessary facilities are ahead of schedule."
The Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix, the first Formula One race to be run in the Middle East, is less than three months away. The next milestone on the calendar for which the circuit will be ready is the FIA inspection on March 7 in advance of the race on 04.04.04.