Bernie Ecclestone is leading the negotiations as France tries to return to the F1 calendar. The country’s government is pushing hard to include Paul Ricard on the 2013 calendar, with a deal to alternate annually a single race date with Belgum’s Spa Francorchamps.
RMC Sport reports that Paris has formally requested Ecclestone, F1’s chief executive, send them the contract. But the report said a crucial detail is missing: the necessary race fee.
As those negotiations begin, it is revealed that Eric Boullier – the Lotus team’s French team principal – met with Ecclestone in London on Wednesday to talk about it. Boullier had tried to “speed things up”, the French language report said.
RMC added that Spa-Francorchamps’ Belgian promoters currently spend EUR 22.5 million per race on the grand prix, a figure neither they nor France are willing to pay in 2013 and beyond.
“Both have set a maximum of EUR 15 million per race,” said the report.
The responsible Belgian minister, Jean-Claude Marcourt, declined to comment.