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Texas will build the track we want - Bernie Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone
Ecclestone is hopeful the US will embrace F1

Texas was chosen to host the US Grand Prix because the new circuit would be built "exactly" to specifications, Bernie Ecclestone has said.

State capital Austin will host F1's return to America from 2012 after it fought off rivals, including New York.

Asked why he chose Austin, F1 supremo Ecclestone told BBC Sport: "Because they're prepared to build exactly the sort of circuit we want."

Favoured architect Hermann Tilke will design the new F1 track.

The German has been responsible for designing many of the new circuits, including Istanbul Park, Shanghai, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi.

Following this week's announcement about Austin, rival candidate Monticello Motor Club (MMC) questioned whether Austin would be able to have a venue fully operational in time for the 2012 season.

Austin, Texas
Austin will be F1's new home in the US from 2012

"I think New York would be a better venue but we need F1 back in the US," said MMC chairman Ari Strauss, whose circuit had been under consideration.

"However, somebody starting from scratch would not be able to do it until 2013."

Ecclestone is adamant Austin will be ready and said that "it's all done" regarding the purchase of the land needed accommodate the circuit.

"The governor there has been very, very helpful," the 79-year-old added.

The US has not hosted a grand prix since 2007 when Ecclestone failed to come to an agreement with Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which had been home to the event since 2000.

At the time, Ecclestone said: It's all the wrong crowd and the wrong people."

If you'd have come here 10 years ago and said to somebody 'Formula 1, they wouldn't have known what you were talking about

Ecclestone on Istanbul

But now he is ready to take another chance across the Atlantic.

"We've managed without an race in the US, but that part of the world is important," he said.

"There is an awful lot of sport in America and we're there for one race, Nascar has 35 races.

"It's a difficult market to break into but whenever we've raced there in the past we've had capacity crowds."

Meanwhile, Ecclestone revealed that F1 was looking at taking its relationship with Turkey's Istanbul Park into the 2020s.

"We are talking about signing a 10-year deal with them," he said, while in Istanbul for the grand prix. The current contract runs out next year.

606: DEBATE
Doc Barnett

He remained optimistic that sales in tickets would improve following the 2009 event ,which saw only 36,000 three-day passes sold.

The crowd at the track for the Friday practice sessions for this weekend's race was also sparse.

"It's not good but you've got to remember that if you'd have come here 10 years ago and said to somebody 'Formula 1', they wouldn't have known what you were talking about," said Ecclestone of the venue near Istanbul's second airport on the Asian side of the Bosphorus.

"It takes a long time to get into, for people to start to understand."



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see also
US back on F1 calendar from 2012
25 May 10 |  Formula 1
United States loses F1 Grand Prix
12 Jul 07 |  Formula 1
New US GP deal for Indianapolis
17 Aug 06 |  Formula 1
Seven teams boycott US Grand Prix
19 Jun 05 |  Formula 1
Schumacher claims farcical US win
19 Jun 05 |  Formula 1


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