F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has said the famous Italian Grand Prix at Monza could be dropped as F1 looks to prevent the schedule from getting too big.

Ecclestone, who is not afraid of ditching some of F1's most popular venues believes Monza could make way for a new race in an emerging market.

"It is possible that Europe will lose a couple of races in favour of emerging markets," he told the weekly Italian magazine Panorama. 

"If we do move away from Monza - and I say 'if', because no decision has been taken yet - it would be only for economic reasons.

"Of course, the quality of the circuit and the organisation could also be better," added Ecclestone, "but that is not the crucial point."

Interestingly these comments come on the same day it is reported Ecclestone waived the race fee thought to be around €14m to allow the German Grand Prix to take place at the financially troubled Nurburgring circuit.

"Bild has learned that without the gift, there would not have been a Grossen Preis von Deutschland on 7 July," correspondent Helmut Uhl said.

"The Rhineland-Palatinate state and the insolvent Nurburgring GmbH could not have afforded the fee."

A spokesman for the company in charge of the circuit's insolvency process confirmed: "We achieved an agreement in a very short time with Mr Ecclestone.

"The details are not disclosed."

The Nurburgring's insolvency administrator Jens Lieser added: "With his commitment to the Nurburgring, Mr Ecclestone did German Formula 1 fans a big favour."

Ahead of another historic race this weekend at Britain's Silverstone circuit, 1996 champion Damon Hill warned that F1 can not risk losing what he described as the "cornerstone" races of F1.

"Without European enthusiasm," he told the London Evening Standard, "if you just took the sport off to China, India or the States, it would die within minutes.

"But I don't think Bernie's interested in the sport. He's interested in the return it gives," added Hill.


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