Will 2012 see 19 races rather than 20?

Bernie Ecclestone on Sunday sounded certain next season will drop from the scheduled 20 F1 races. He insisted Korea and Bahrain will take place as planned, but cast huge doubt on the ability of the US grand prix organisers to overcome their problems.

“They might pay something now, but it’s the future we are looking for,” F1’s chief executive, referring to the inaugural Austin event, told reporters in Sao Paulo. “They haven’t gotten enough security. We are looking for security in the long term.”

France’s L’Equipe quotes the 81-year-old as playing down speculation Turkey – having fallen off the calendar due to a sanctioning fee dispute with Ecclestone – could fill the void if the 2012 US grand prix is ultimately dropped.

“I think everybody will be pleased,” said Ecclestone when asked about the calendar probably shrinking from 20 to 19 races next year. “The teams are complaining that there are too many races so this will solve the problem.”


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