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Teams and drivers told to boycott Bahrain

Discussion in 'Formula 1' started by Scott Webber, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights has asked the teams and drivers to boycott the Bahrain Grand Prix in late April due to ongoing unrest.
    The country had meant to host the 2011 season opening race, as it has done in previous years, but the event was cancelled after violence and protests broke out in the country, making it unsafe for visitors.

    Whilst the violence has calmed dramatically over the past few months, campaigners are adamant that the government is continuing to mistreat pro-democracy protestors, and has therefore called on the F1 fraternity to once again skip the event.

    "We will campaign for drivers and teams to boycott [the race]," said Nabeel Rajab, vice president for the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights.

    "The government wants Formula One to tell the outside world that everything is back to normal. If they come, they are helping the government to say [it is].

    "We would prefer it if they didn't take part. I am sure the drivers and teams respect human rights."
    Bernie Ecclestone however seems unlikely to cancel the event which contributes upwards of £25 million ($40m) to the sports revenues - though the organisers paid Ecclestone the fee for 2011 despite the event not going ahead.

  2. Does not matter what Bernie thinks though. It´s up to the teams to decide this and i´m fairly sure they think about the people first rather then the money.

    I hope they boycott it.
  3. Any chance it'd be cancelled again? April is a long way away, what if it flares up again just a month before the event?
  4. Yes, it will send out a clear message if the teams decide not to go. But would sponsors be willing to compromise?

    It's potentially a lot of exposure lost on the weekend of the race, especially in a relatively new market area for Formula 1.

    But I do hope they boycott it, I just don't see it happening unless the riots start again.
  5. Bram

    Ezekiel 25:17 Staff Premium

    If Bernie had any moral responsibility he would not go there to start with. This GP shows exactly what F1 has become: money, money, money!
    • Like Like x 4
  6. Umm... you do know that they did not went there last year, because of stuff like this?
    Bernie planned to give them the money back but Bahrain said no it´s ok, you can keep it.
  7. Bram

    Ezekiel 25:17 Staff Premium

    Of course, if they would have accepted the refund they would surely be off the calendar this year. Was a "nice gesture" that was immediately picked up by the media, surprise surprise :)

    What does Bahrain add? Nice track? Lots of visitors? Great country for the visiting fans from abroad?

    Its a disgrace that real classic F1 venues like Spa-Francorchamps are in trouble while tracks like Bahrain pop-up on each global motorsport calendar.
    • Like Like x 3
  8. Xosé Estrada

    Xosé Estrada

    What it doesn't add are human rights, for sure :rolleyes:
    • Like Like x 2
  9. They do have contracts you know :) Just because Bernie has to give back the money he never owned in the first place won´t make him remove a race he really wants on the calendar.

    What does Bahrain add? Probably a bit of everything. It´s not only sand-n***ers there walking camels around but there´s a whole society there right in the desert. And some of them believe it or not are F1 fans.

    Not sure SPA is in trouble even though they like to mention it every single year.

    2000 - Belgium
    2001 - Belgium
    2002 - Belgium
    2003 -
    2004 - Belgium
    2005 - Belgium
    2006 -
    2007 - Belgium
    2008 - Belgium
    2009 - Belgium
    2010 - Belgium
    2011 - Belgium
    2012 - Yep you guessed it, Belgium next year aswell.

    So just by looking at the numbers for the last 12 years i´d say SPA has not been replaced by another event since 2006.
    Since 1985 SPA has been on the calendar every single year except for the two above.
    And before 2003 it was held 18 years in a row.

    P.S. Bahrain GP has been around since 2004.
    • Like Like x 2
  10. As far as I remember, they didn't go last year in fear of personal safety, because of the riots.

    I doubt they would avoid going there if it was only in solidarity for human rights etc.

    But I hope you're right and it stops them from going...
  11. If it were for personal safety then we would never see the Brazilian GP :) That´s a dangerous country.
    Now that i think back i actually think it was Bahrain that made the decision, Bernie let them decide and most teams felt they did not want to go.

    The other side of the coin:
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Oh yes, didn't Bernie get mugged there 2 years ago?

    Brazil doesn't have protests right outside the circuit every year though - unless I really don't know what I'm talking about.
  13. Yea probably, i think some drivers have been be-stolen on stuff. Last time Bernie got mugged was in London i believe when he got a black eye.
    You gotta give him respect for taking his black eye and turning it into a great advert :)

    True, but neither do Bahrain :) It´s just since last year it has bubbled up, all the countries are watching Libya and wants to do the same thing, who can blame them really, i´m all for the people.
  14. Yes I agree that Bahrain didn't have protests before last year, but to me it's pretty clear that they've decided to use it every year as their target.

    And how do they prevent any prospective troublemakers to enter the circuit? Could become a circus, like Marcus Horan or whatever his name was, at Silverstone 10-11 years ago. Only much worse, and with malicious intent.

    But I'm all for more races - really hoping it doesn't get cancelled this year again.
  15. Bahrain knows what to do, like last year. Yea same here, i actually liked watching the Bahrain GP, i did not like the bumpy infield but if im not mistaken that has been fixed some so that section is like a go-cart track now.

    It´s better then China atleast :) I can appreciate the track´s very technical nature but for driving pleasure i´m not so sure about that one.
    Also not really a fan of 1km long straights. Just a waste of tarmac in an F1 car imo.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Bernie should have listened to Fleetwood Mac:

    Also Hampus: Spa is under threat of doing the same as Hockenheim&Nürburgring now with Paul Ricard in 2013. If someone wants Paul Ricard, they should place in on the calendar instead of Failencia, Catalameya or Borerain.
    • Like Like x 2