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Organisers confident of Australian GP survival
February 03, 2008 22:01 IST
Organisers of the Australian Grand Prix are confident the race will retain its place on the Formula One calendar despite reports it is in danger of being scrapped.
Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone said the race had little chance of being renewed after 2010 because it did not fit in with European television time slots.
Ecclestone said India, Russia [Images] and South Korea were all more attractive options because they would generate greater sponsorship and television revenues, according to reports in The Sunday Telegraph.
"Our costs are very high in Australia and we get a lot less money. It's bloody bad for us," Ecclestone said.
Australia has been hosting a round of the world championship for the past 23 years, initially in Adelaide then Melbourne, and is contracted to stage races until 2010.
However, the race has been suffering huge financial losses in recent years, casting doubts about its long term viability.
Australian Grand Prix chairman Ron Walker rejected speculation the race was in danger, telling Australian Associated Press the financial losses were outweighed by the global publicity it provided for Melbourne.
"When you look at other Grands Prix around the world in China, Dubai and Malaysia they don't get anything like the attendances we get in Melbourne," Walker said.
"This will just blow over and negotiations will take place in a normal fashion."
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