First there has been talk of New York, and now a grand prix around the streets of Glasgow could become a reality if the ambitious promoter of the successful new F1 Rocks series of concerts gets his way – with Paul Morrison admitting that 'when I have something in my mind, it is just a case of doing it'.
Already the brains behind the annual T In The Park pop festival, Morrison launched the inaugural F1 Rocks initiative over the weekend of the Singapore Grand Prix last month – headlined by such global music superstars as Beyonce, No Doubt, the Black-Eyed Peas and eighties legends Simple Minds, and watched by luminaries including Richard Branson and the Sultan of Brunei – and more are in the pipeline at other races next year and beyond.
Now setting his sights on his next goal – bringing F1 to Scotland for the first time – Morrison admits that the one key stumbling block could be the kind of money that the top flight's commercial rights-holder Bernie Ecclestone would demand for the honour of welcoming the world's most glamorous sporting spectacle.
“It would be amazing,” he enthused, in an interview with the Daily Record
newspaper. “I'm speaking to Bernie about it. I am not sure the Scottish government will be in any mood to fork out the kind of cash it takes, but I would love to see F1 cars belting along the Clydeside Expressway. I think it would be fantastic to see them take a left up Union Street.
“We have the roads for it. Next year is when it gets fun, because Mr. Ecclestone is serious about adding new countries. Just because it hasn't happened before, it does not wash with me that it can't happen. That is why we will see an F1 race in Scotland in the future, certainly within the decade. There is no reason why Glasgow can't have F1.”
Anticipating six more F1 Rocks gigs in a variety of different locations in 2010, the CEO of All The Worlds – which signed a multi-million pound deal with the Universal Music Group to establish the project – is confident both about the future of the music/sporting extravaganza, as well as the prospects for a Glasgow Grand Prix. After all, he reasons, once he has a notion in his head, he becomes like a dog with a bone.
“F1 by its nature comes with glamour,” Morrison opined. “Bernie Ecclestone does what he does with the racing, and our job is to up the glamour – lots of parties, lots of A-list celebrities, lots of movie and music stars.
“If I have an idea and I can visualise it and believe it, my head thinks it is possible. I pictured an image of a music festival in Scotland and that made me think it was possible. You can psycho-analyse that to delusions or a big ego, but when I have something in my mind it is just a case of doing it.
“Any new thing is difficult – we went for the biggest acts in the world because we had to set our stall out. Everyone was going to sit up and take notice. We set the bar high, but I didn't expect this much coverage. Now I have a lot of really big stars, particularly rock bands, saying they want to come to play our event.”