Formula one is not likely to return to Australia after the expiry of the current contract in 2010, the sport's chief executive Bernie Ecclestone has said. After the country's first world championship round was held in 1985 in Adelaide, subsequently switching to Melbourne in 1996, the 77-year-old told News Ltd. that the lure of attractive alternative destinations like India, Russia and Korea is too strong to ignore.

F1 supremo Ecclestone also expressed little sympathy for concerns the Victorian state government has about the rising costs involved in staging the annual race, and Premier John Brumby's reluctance to embrace the concept of a night race.

"Maybe we don't want to be in Australia," Bernie said.

"Our costs are very high in Australia and we get a lot less money. It's bloody bad for us.

"We've got quite a few places on the list which would like to have formula one and as it seems your guy down there doesn't want formula one, we can make him happy and make the other people happy," the British billionaire added.

Ecclestone said sponsors and manufacturers support his stance about Australia, including a strict ultimatum about needing the race to be held at night if it were to stay on the calendar.

"If we were to continue to be there, we would have to have a night race," he said, also ruling out moving the event to a different Australian state.