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Still a chance to save German GP, says Ecclestone

NEWS STORY
03/02/2015

Although the signs are not looking good, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone says there is still a chance of saving this year's German Grand Prix.

The race, which in recent years has been hosted on an alternating basis between Hockenheim and the Nurburgring is currently without a venue this year. With Hockenheim having hosted the 2014 event it was due to be held at the Nurburgring however, neither venue appears to have the necessary funding.

On Monday, following an enquiry from Germany's Rhein-Zeitung newspaper, Ecclestone, replying by email, appeared to suggest the event is dead and buried.

"I am just as sorry that there will not be a Formula One race in Germany as our fans," he wrote. "It is just a case that as the attendance has been so low for the last few years that it is not commercially viable for the promoters in Germany."

"Basically we haven't a contract with either venue," he subsequently told the Press Association. "We are trying to get something done, we are trying to help them.

"In the end, and God only knows why, the audience in Germany is lousy," he claimed. "I've no idea why it should be because they've a German manufacturer in Mercedes who are constructors' champions, they had a driver in Sebastian) who won four successive drivers' championships. But they have not been selling enough tickets to make it work. It's purely commercial, so I'm trying to be a little bit helpful to them.

"We're trying to rescue it," he insisted, "but I can't guarantee we will. We are doing our best, and maybe by this weekend we'll have an answer. I hope so.

"The Nurburgring has just been sold again, for the third time" he continued, not mentioning the fact that he tried unsuccessfully to buy the venue last year, "a Russian guy (Viktor Kharitonin) bought it. When everybody thinks of a Russian owner there is plenty of money, but I met him the other day and I don't think he is enthusiastic for putting in the money. He would like the race, obviously, which is why he bought the bloody place!

"The bottom line is there is still a chance and we hope to know more by the weekend."

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