Cosworth's F1 boss Mark Gallagher has said a decision over whether or not the Bahrain Grand Prix
goes ahead needs to be taken quickly before moves are made to start transporting freight to the Gulf state for the test planned early next month.
A final decision about the event now looks set to be taken by Crown Prince Salman ibn Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifa, [See separate story HERE
], with that decision expected to come by Tuesday.
Speaking to Sky News
, Gallagher revealed that Tuesday was the latest that teams could wait for the decision to be made before they would need to start shipping freight to Bahrain.
"The decisions over the next 72 hours are going to be absolutely critical for all of us, and I think the sport needs a decision by the end of play on Tuesday at the latest," he said. "We're currently testing in Barcelona, which finishes on Monday, and the freight needs to be shipped out for the test, which is in 10 days' time.
"The test comes first, then the grand prix itself, so really the big decision needs to be made by Tuesday evening."
Gallagher added that teams were keen to race in Bahrain but insisted that safety had to come first for all concerned.
"All the teams want to have a race in Bahrain,” he said. "But that comes secondary to what is clearly a very serious political situation, and it's not for us to dictate or comment on that situation. What we have to do is support the sport, and from a Cosworth point of view we have three important customers.
"If those customers, together with Bernie, the FIA, the government in Bahrain, determine the grand prix should take place because it's safe to do so, the situation is calm, clearly we will be there.
"It's either entirely safe or it's not, and that's a decision that has to be made quickly.”