Melbourne not keen on earlier race start time

Jan.12 (GMM) Race organisers are reluctant to shift the start time for the 2015 Australian grand prix.

In response to Jules Bianchi’s horror crash at Suzuka, the governing FIA vowed to look into ensuring that races are no longer started too close to dusk.

Races at the season opener Melbourne, for instance, are traditionally now started at 5pm local, creating a better morning television timeslot for the bulk European audience.

The local Herald Sun newspaper claims race organisers have now received a request to reverse the scheduled start time by several hours.

But race chief Andrew Westacott insisted: “The race time will remain at 5pm as per agreement with the Australian grand prix corporation and formula one management, which means Melbourne, as the opening race of the season, airs in Asia at lunchtime and Europe at breakfast.”

Last year, the state government agreed a five-year agreement to keep the grand prix at Albert Park until 2020.

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