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Ecclestone: Bahrain GP will get green light

BERNIE ECCLESTONE today categorically insisted the Bahrain Grand Prix is to go ahead next weekend unless there is a late call-off by the local organisers.

Ecclestone was pressed upon the thorny issue of Bahrain as he arrived in the paddock in Shanghai ahead of Sunday's Chinese Grand Prix, which has become overshadowed by events in the Gulf kingdom.

The 81-year-old is to meet with all team principals tomorrow, and although denying Bahrain is on the agenda, it would be a surprise if it is not discussed at some stage.

With FIA president Jean Todt due in Shanghai on Saturday, it is understood a definitive answer as to whether F1 heads to Bahrain is due this weekend.

As far as Ecclestone is concerned, however, the race is on.

“We are here and we are going to be in Bahrain,” he said. “It's another race on the calendar, it's scheduled.

“The only people that can do anything about it is the National Sporting Authority in the country. They can ask for it to be withdrawn. Unless it gets withdrawn, then we'll be there.”

Ecclestone has reiterated the fact he has no concerns regarding safety.

He said: “Apparently people are there carrying out their business as normal, so I'm told.

“I don't see why it should be (dangerous). I don't think the people in Bahrain have anything against Formula One team people or journalists.

“I've not heard the teams express any concerns, and I think Sebastian Vettel said he's happy to be there.”

Jokingly asked as to whether he felt anybody should cancel their hotel bookings, he said: “No, I wouldn't do that if I was you.”