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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 March, 2004, 12:02 GMT
Bahrain 'tried to stop GP'
Sakhir circuit in Bahrain
Bahrain will host the first Grand Prix in the Middle East
Organisers of the Bahrain Grand Prix tried to cancel this year's race because of fears that the circuit would not be ready, according to a report.

The Bahrain Racing Circuit in Sakhir is scheduled to host the third of the season's Formula One races on 4 April.

But Autosport magazine quote circuit supervisor Philippe Gurdjian as saying: "Two weeks ago we thought there was no way could hold the race.

"We decided to cancel it but Bernie Ecclestone said 'no'."

The race will go ahead but we will not be 100 per cent ready
Philippe Gurdjian

"So we just had to get more people in to get the job finished."

Next month's race will be the first Formula One Grand Prix in the Middle East and the circuit was officially opened last week when Ralf Schumacher completed a circuit in his Williams.

"The night before there were still people out laying kerbstones and painting," Williams technical director Patrick Head had revealed on Monday.

"They've done a remarkable job in the time but I should be careful where you put your hands in case the paint is still wet," he had said.

And Gurjian added in Autosport: "The race will go ahead but we will not be 100 percent ready, although the track is finished."

Bahrain, with high temperatures and the danger of sand blowing around, will be a challenge to all 10 teams.

Head had said the track had also been dusty and dirty, with some sand blowing around.

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