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Formula One Grand Prix NJ Race In Danger

The Formula One Grand Prix race scheduled for Weehawken & West New York in June is in danger of being cancelled according to reports out of England.

Governor Christie at the Formula One Grand Prix race in October, 2011
Governor Christie at the Formula One Grand Prix race in October, 2011 (Governor’s Office/Tim Larsen)

The British-based Formula One’s CEO  Bernie Ecclestone tells the Guardian newspaper that the race’s organizers, headed by US fund manager Leo Hindery “have not complied with the terms and conditions of the contract which is now gone anyway.”

Ecclestone said in June that the promoters were having problems getting sponsors and additional money for the inaugural Grand Prix Of America. “They are sorting things out internally with some of their funds,” he said. One racing insider told the Guardian that “pricing for sponsorship etc is unrealistic and not obtainable in the current market – hence the malaise.”

The race was announced last October with much fanfare with Governor Christie at a press conference anticipating “an enormous tourism, economic impact upon this area and across our whole state.”  No public money was being used for the race.

Construction on a track had begun and test races had taken place. Whispers of problems have been swirling and picked up steam when Tom Cotter, the head of Formula One Grand Prix of America, the organization bringing the race to New Jersey, stepped down in August. Promoters at the time denied reports the race was in jeopardy.

The New Jersey race was also marked as “subject to confirmation” on the provisional 2012 F1 race calendar according to the Guardian. The calendar is scheduled to be finalized on Friday.

Ecclestone is still hopeful the race will happen. “I think if somebody got behind them it could happen in 2013 because they have come a long way with the circuit,” he said.

Formula One Race
Formula One Race Course (New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority)

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