Bahrain to revert to old track layout next year

London: The 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix will be contested over the old track layout, not the experimental circuit widely labelled "boring" for the Formula One season-opener in March.

A lengthened Sakhir circuit and new challenges and turns greeted the drivers for the first race of 2010 won by Ferrari`s Fernando Alonso, leading to criticism of the event which marked the sport`s 60th anniversary season.

"It was important for us to celebrate this momentous occasion by doing something very unique and different," the circuit`s acting chief executive Sheikh Salman Bin Isa Al Khalifa said in a statement on Monday.

"Since its inception in 2004 Bahrain International Circuit has continually set new standards in the world of international motorsport."

That view was shared by seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher.

"From a driver`s point of view Bahrain is quite a challenge. Very tricky corner combinations," said Schumacher in the same statement.

McLaren team mates Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton were similarly praiseworthy of the old layout.

"I`m a big fan of Bahrain as a country and I also really enjoy the circuit as there are some great fast-flowing sections where you can really push the car," said world champion Button.

Fellow Briton Hamilton said: "I love the Bahrain circuit, it is one of the ones I really look forward to, like Monaco and Spa.

"It is just such a great trip. It is one of the few places you go to without stress or hassle and you just feel so relaxed there," the 25-year-old said.

Bureau Report

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