The on-again, off-again saga that is Grand Prix of America is off-again. The event has been removed from next year's schedule, but the promoter says the race will go on.
Leo Hindery Jr., promoter of the race, confirmed last week that the Grand Prix of America would be postponed until, at least, 2014. He added that “we remain 100 percent committed to the Grand Prix of America at Port Imperial.”
The race, one of two scheduled to be held in the United States in 2013, was tentatively penciled in for June 16 when the Formula 1 calendar was released in September. The race was planned to be run on a temporary street circuit in New Jersey, across the Hudson River from New York City and with a backdrop of Manhattan.
The likelihood of the race being held has been questioned for some time. F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone has long cast doubts about the planning of the Grand Prix of America. Last April, in a story posted on Digital Journal, Ecclestone questioned whether the circuit would be ready in time.
“They’ve run out of time,” the F1 boss told CBC. He said all permits were in order, but “they missed the boat a little” on getting enough financing in place. “They’ve had a wake-up call, but it came too late.”
The mayors of Weehawken and West New York confirmed postponement of race on Oct. 18. Weehawken mayor Richard Turner told the New Jersey Star Ledger that the race stalled due to delay in obtaining permits required to modify streets in preparation for a car race.
“We promised (New Jersey) Governor (Chris) Christie, the towns (of Weehawken and West New York), the sport and its international fans the best possible experience,” Hindery told SpeedTV . “Unfortunately, we need additional time to ensure that happens.”
For the time being, there is one grand prix race on the Formula 1 calendar. The United States Grand Prix will be run for the first time in Texas this year, at a permanent racing facility in Austin on Nov. 18, and is set on the 2013 schedule for Nov. 17.