F1: Ecclestone's 'Rain Button' Idea Finds Support, Bahrain Decision Set For Tuesday Photo:
Mike Stevens | Mar, 04 2011 | 0 Comments

Three F1 figures have come out in support of Bernie Ecclestone's 'rain button' proposal.

Other commentators have slammed the idea or accused the F1 Chief Executive of doing nothing more than drumming up publicity.

The 80-year-old has proposed that, to spice up the action, tracks could be artificially watered during races "maybe with a two minute warning".

"The idea is not as daft as it sounds," Pirelli's F1 boss Paul Hembery is quoted as saying by the Daily Telegraph.

"You could argue that running at night under lights is a gimmick. But Singapore has turned out to be one of the most spectacular races of the season.

"At the end of the day you want people to watch what you are offering," he added.

Former Grand Prix winner Johnny Herbert told The Sun: "People will say it is artificial but it would be the same for everybody. Many of the best races in the past few years have been when it has rained."

And John Watson, a Grand Prix winner in the 70s and 80s, added: "I first proposed this to Bernie in 1994! Fans want to see exciting races where the drivers are made to work."



Bahrain Decision Set For Tuesday

Bernie Ecclestone has revealed he wants to decide on Tuesday how to reschedule the 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix.

The season opener in the island Kingdom was called off due to political unrest, but F1's Chief Executive is now hinting strongly at a new November date for the Sakhir event.

Earlier, Ecclestone had hinted at a date during the August break, but that seems to have now been ruled out, perhaps due to the likely extreme desert heat.

"I'm hoping beyond hope things settle peacefully and we find a slot later in the year," he told the BBC.

"If there is peace in Bahrain then we will be there, we will find a way."

Tuesday is the first chance for F1 to officially reschedule the Grand Prix, as the World Motor Sport Council meets in Paris.

There are still reports of protests in the Bahrain capital Manama, but Ecclestone said he thinks the political situation is now easing.

"Yes, you never see anything about Bahrain on TV now," he said.

It is believed he is targeting 20 November, a week after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with perhaps Brazil to be pushed back to December.



Vettel Votes Against Bahrain Rescheduling

If Sebastian Vettel was in charge of Formula One, he would not reschedule the 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix.

With political protests still ongoing in the island kingdom, it has been suggested that either an August or November date is likely if Bernie Ecclestone and the FIA do reinstate the postponed race later this season.

The problem with August is that temperatures in Bahrain are likely to be pushing 40 degrees, while the date would also interfere with F1's summer break.

A pairing with Abu Dhabi in November, meanwhile, would create a strenuous triple back-to-back 'flyaway' race scheduling at the tail-end of an already busy calendar.

"The end of a season is already stressful enough, and we seem to have enough races anyway," reigning World Champion Vettel reportedly told Finland's Turun Sanomat at the Geneva Motor Show.



Stewart 'Fine' After Health Scare

Sir Jackie Stewart is "fine" after his health scare on Wednesday, according to the famous Scot's friend and former Stewart Grand Prix driver Rubens Barrichello.

"He had a full check up and he feels good now," the Brazilian veteran, who now drives for Williams, wrote on Twitter.

71-year-old triple world champion Stewart spent time in a London hospital after collapsing with chest pain during a flight from the Geneva motor show.

A spokesman for his office, describing Stewart's problem as a "physical setback", said the family is "expecting a full recovery".

It is understood he was discharged from the west London hospital following precautionary checks.


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