Just days before the 2015 Italian Grand Prix, F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone has stated that he is not anticipating further talks with the Monza Autodrome organisers over reviewing the circuit’s contract.
It was revealed earlier this year that the Italian Grand Prix is likely to become a shared event, jointly hosted by Monza and Imola, as protracted negotiations over the cost of hosting the race have dragged on for over two years.
According to Autosport, there is believed to be a €10 million difference in opinion between Ecclestone and the race organisers, with FOM demanding €25 million per year compared to the €15 million currently on offer.
Ecclestone is adamant that Monza pays the same rate as other European events: “The bottom line is we’ve got something to sell and they have to decide whether they want to buy it. The price we are asking for is the same as the other people in Europe are paying.”
“They had a very good deal which went back years before and they’d like to continue, but maybe it doesn’t suit certain people. Maybe something they’ve enjoyed in the past they won’t be enjoying [in the future].”
The future of Monza’s place on the calendar has been the source of heated debate over recent weeks, with fans, ex-drivers and even the Italian Premier becoming involved. The latter, Matteo Renzi, publicly stated on Italian radio station RTL: “Leave Monza alone! That’s what we’re going to tell Ecclestone. Formula 1 doesn’t rely solely on money. It’s also about history.”
His sentiments were echoed by Sir Jackie Stewart, who has stated that F1’s traditional circuits must be protected in order to preserve the history of the sport.