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Ecclestone: December date for India possible

NEWS STORY
20/05/2011

Bernie Ecclestone has confirmed that the maiden Indian Grand Prix could be moved from October to December should Bahrain be reinstated to the 2011 calendar.

With a final decision on Bahrain expected early next month, and F1's powers that be seemingly determined that it should be reinstated, there has been widespread speculation as to when the race could be held. Following reports that the Bahrain event could be given India's October slot and the New Delhi race moved to early December, Ecclestone has confirmed that the idea is being considered.

"Yes, we are having a look at it," he told Reuters. "Everything's possible. We could do, yeah. I'm not sure at the moment what I'm going to do. Everything's up in the air. I haven't decided about it. We'll see if we have to go to Bahrain."

The most likely date for the Indian event is December 4, which would make sense since the FIA is to hold its Gala - basically its annual awards ceremony - later that same week.

Vicky Chandhok, president of the Federation of Motorsports Clubs of India, was keen to point out that such a move would be to accommodate the sport and should in no way be taken as suggesting that the New Delhi circuit will not be ready in time for its original October date.

"They don't really need the extra time as far as circuit preparation is concerned," he told Reuters. "If it is pushed to December 4 we will have the race and then the sixth of December is the FIA world council meeting in Delhi and on the seventh is the annual awards and the eighth is the general assembly. So we would have a week of Formula One and FIA in Delhi. From that perspective it makes sense."

However, Chandhok was also keen to make it clear that the change of date is still under consideration and that nothing has been decided.

"I think what they were asked perhaps was that in case Bahrain does happen, could they accommodate a change in date," he said. "They are OK, they understand the situation but I think they are not participating in any active discussion on it because it's a call that Bernie and the FIA have to make, whether Bahrain is going to go ahead or not."

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