- Helping you drive happy

F1: Bernie Ecclestone ''not moving'' Japan start time for typhoon Phanfone

From GMM

Bernie Ecclestone has ruled out moving the start time of Sunday's Japanese grand prix.

Shifting the 3pm start time forward by up to four hours has been under consideration, as the typhoon Phanfone bears down on Suzuka.

But F1 chief executive Ecclestone, who is not in Japan this weekend, told Forbes: "I'm not moving anything anywhere.

"Nothing is changing at the minute," he told the F1 business journalist Christian Sylt.

Indeed, the governing FIA has separately confirmed at Suzuka that Sunday's race will be at 3pm as scheduled.

That is despite the sport's official weather forecaster UBIMET predicting "persistent" and often "heavy" rain for most of Sunday, and particularly the afternoon.

"If it rains the teams will race," Ecclestone insisted. "Nobody knows what it's going to be like.

"Maybe there's going to be a storm."

Ecclestone has also rejected claims the typhoon, and potential flight delays heading out of Suzuka, could affect preparations for next weekend's inaugural Russian grand prix.

"We will be in Russia on time, no matter what happens, including an earthquake," the Briton told the Telegraph.