Newsstand » Formula One calls for a return to the Long Beach Grand Prix in California
Formula One has stated a strong financial case in its bid to return to Long Beach.
The southern Californian resort staged the last of seven grands prix in 1983, following which CART and IndyCar have taken to its streets.
F1 is still waiting to hear whether Long Beach city council officials will put the contract for a race out to tender as IndyCar stages the last event of its current deal next year.
Good start: The opening race of the 2014 Formula One season kicked off in Melbourne last weekend
Plans: Formula One would like to see a return to the Long Beach Grand Prix in California happen soon
Chris Pook, the man who took F1 to Long Beach almost 40 years ago, is currently working on behalf of Bernie Ecclestone who is determined to again return to the west coast of America.
Pook this week presented F1’s case to a group of local businessmen, in particular to allay fears with regard to cost.
Pook claims just £5.5million is required to upgrade the current circuit to F1 standards, a sum that will be met by the promoter.
‘People have been saying it would cost 100 million (US) dollars (£60million), and that number has just stuck in people’s minds. It’s not even close to that,’ Pook was quoted as saying by the Orange County Register.
Affordable: Officials of the Long Beach Grand Prix believe the circuit could be renovated for racing for just £5.5m
Plea: Formula One officials are eager that the Long Beach council officials consider their case for a return of F1
Pook also claims the promoter will not charge the city a fee to hold the race, and that all expenses would be met.
Citing what the United States Grand Prix has done for the city of Austin, Texas, Pook added: ‘The net tax gain for Austin in 2013 was 4.9 million (US) dollars (£3million), and the net gain for Texas was 17.2 (US) million (£10.4million).
‘The value of F1 is that it provides new money. F1 racing draws a worldwide audience. You would be tapping into new consumers.’
With council officials due to make a decision on the tender in the next few weeks, Pook said: ‘We just want the opportunity to state our case, to be considered.
‘We just want them to take a look at what we bring to the table. That’s all we’re asking.’
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