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Korea dropped from 2015 calendar

NEWS STORY
06/01/2015

In the official 2015 calendar issued by the FIA today, Korea is dropped thereby reducing the series to 20 races.

The news will not come as a shock to anyone indeed, it was the event's inclusion in the calendar issued by the WMSC in early December that really raised eyebrows. Among the most surprised by the event's inclusion were its organisers who claimed it was the first they'd heard of it.

"We were given no prior notice," an official told AFP. "The FIA just announced it, although we've already conveyed our position about the difficulties of hosting a race next year."

Having lost around £108m ($170) over the four years the event was held, it's fair to say that despite the promised benefits of F1, Korea would be happy if it never heard of the sport again.

Initially it was thought that the event's return to the calendar was a means of exploiting a loophole in the engine regulations, whereby Article 28.4 of the 2015 sporting regulations stipulates that "each driver may use no more than four power units during a championship season", one less than in 2014. However, it goes on; "this number will be increased to five if the number of events in the championship, as originally scheduled, exceeds 20."

However, Bernie Ecclestone subsequently denied this, insisting: "We have a contract with them," though he admitted: "They (the organisers) would rather it not happen.

"Like lots of things, as you grow older you learn. It seemed a good idea at the time. As my old mate Colin Chapman used to say, 'circumstances change'. We have to put them on the calendar and if we hadn't have done they could have sued us. We had them off for a year, agreed on the understanding that they would be back."

Asked if organisers would still have to pay the fee because they are on the calendar, he replied: "If that's what the contract says."

The revised calendar sees no other changes, Korea removed as quietly and without fuss as when initially added, a spokesperson for the sport's governing body subsequently admitting the race had been dropped because it "was not viable".

Despite the removal of the event, at twenty races the 2015 schedule remains, along with 2012, the busiest in the 66 year history of the sport.

Revised calendar here

Chris Balfe

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Chris Roper, 07/01/2015 10:18

"Wait for the next loophole where the FIA state that, as a result, everyone but Honda are allowed 5 power units."

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2. Posted by Jonno, 07/01/2015 9:19

"I'm totally shocked. I suppose we will be hearing that it was a put up job by Bernie and Red Bull, so they could get away with using 5 engines this year. I won't believe a word of it. Bernie playing games - unheard of.
"

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