I can't see much sense in a decision to drop the coverage, really. The average viewing for a grand prix is 5-6 million people. Canada saw 8.4 million; that's the kind of figure you would expect to see for a season finale where the title was going down to the wire. Compare this to the highest figures for a programme on BBC4 - 1.6 million - and it just doesn't add up. It would be much better to cut some of the crap from BBC1 and BBC2, axe BBC4 and put the few good shows from there on the mainstream channels. Otherwise, merge BBC3 and BBC4 and show the best programmes from each, as both channels are clogged with repeats and pointless filler. That they are only on for half a day each (or has this been changed?) is another issue with this: they can still manage to fill both with programmes that are not top-quality.
If it turns out that the sports budget is a specific area where money needs to be saved, how about getting rid of Match of the Day instead? Apparently over the course of a year it's more expensive and pulls in less viewers. This adds more to the theory that this is a bargaining tool to get a better deal from Bernie, in my opinion.