Bernie Ecclestone Lining Up Azerbaijan Grand Prix As Move Into Region Looks 'Troubled'
F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone is lining up a Grand Prix in the capital of Azerbaijan as F1’s "move into turbulent new territory in the Black Sea region starts to look troubled," according to Kevin Eason of the LONDON TIMES. City officials in Baku have "put F1 on their list of must-have sporting events," and Ecclestone "is listening to a deal that could put the sport on the city’s streets as soon as next season." Ecclestone: “They are talking about 2015. That may be a bit soon unless it is the end of the season. That is a possibility but 2016 is more likely.” Baku is already playing host to the European Athletics Championships next year and has made several bids for a summer Olympic Games. The most notable large-scale event staged in the city to date "is probably the Eurovision Song Contest," which it staged in '12. However, Azerbaijan’s record on human rights "has been a source of concern" to the Western powers to add to the problems now mounting in Ukraine (LONDON TIMES, 3/4).