F1 commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone has denied that money is behind his desire to see the Bahrain Grand Prix go ahead as planned.

The race was canned last year because of political unrest in the Gulf State, with some groups insisting that a return shouldn't occur this year because of continued uncertainty about the political situation.

The first anniversary of the trouble last month saw further clashes between protestors and police, with Ecclestone insisting at the time that he wasn't worried about trouble around the race.

There had been suggestions in some quarters that Ecclestone's desire to see the race take place was to avoid losing out on the race fee that is paid each year by organisers, but the 81-year-old has now revealed that the fee has already been banked and wouldn't be returned if the race was cancelled for the second successive season.

"We have a contract with them and we're respecting the contract," he told the Daily Telegraph. "And I don't believe the people there would take a risk if they thought there was a risk.

"They [the Bahrainis] will pay if there is no race. The money is in the bank already. So we're not going because we're going to get paid.

"That has nothing to do with it."