Jarno Trulli has become the latest leading Formula 1 figure to lament the loss of the Canadian Grand Prix from the 2009 calendar – suggesting that as 'one of the best events of the year' and such an important market for the sport's car manufacturers, it should be re-instated as soon as possible.
The Italian visited Montreal following the Monaco Grand Prix to promote his Podere Castorani wine label, and he has reflected that the fact that F1 is not going there this year is sad indeed. The Toyota star has four times in twelve appearances finished in sixth place around the iconic Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on the Île Notre-Dame – and he argued that such a popular weekend for drivers, teams and fans alike should not be allowed to remain absent for long.
“That's unfortunate,” the 34-year-old told rds.ca
when asked about there being no North American outing at all this year, “but I know everyone is pushing to come back here.
“The manufacturers especially are very keen; it is an important market for them, and Canada was always one of the best events of the year.”
The Canadian Grand Prix has been held every year bar two since 1967, and around the track subsequently re-named in honour of the country's greatest motorsport hero since 1978 – but an ongoing financial dispute between race promoter Grand Prix du Canada and F1 commercial rights-holder Bernie Ecclestone was unable to be resolved for it to take its place on the 2009 schedule, meaning its slot has been assumed instead by the Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul this weekend, by all accounts a somewhat less popular event.
Whilst Trulli refused to be drawn into the continuing FIA-FOTA budget cap stand-off – insisting it is a 'political question' for the teams and the governing body rather than the drivers – he did contend that, an abject performance in Monaco notwithstanding, Toyota's chances of glory this season are far from over.
“Right now Brawn have the best car,” the Pescara native conceded. “They are very successful, but everyone is working very hard to recover. Of course it is not easy, but the championship is still very long.”