/ Motorsport

Twenty-race F1 calendar is confirmed

Updated: Wednesday, 07 Dec 2011 15:18

Formula 1 - Have confirmed races in Bahrain and the United States
Formula 1 - Have confirmed races in Bahrain and the United States

Formula One's 20-race 2012 calendar has been approved unchanged by the sport's governing body despite previous doubts about races in Bahrain and the United States.

"The 2012 FIA Formula One World Championship calendar was confirmed as previously published," the International Automobile Federation said in a statement issued after a World Motor Sport Council meeting in New Delhi.

The calendar had looked uncertain after Formula One's commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone, who puts it forward to the FIA for final approval, handed a contract ultimatum to organisers of a planned US Grand Prix in Austin, Texas.

There has also been uncertainty about Bahrain's race, cancelled this year due to civil unrest that continues to trouble the Gulf kingdom.

Sources in the meeting said changes to the calendar, published at the end of August with only countries rather than specific venues mentioned, were not discussed.

Ecclestone told Reuters at the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix late last month that he doubted the race, scheduled for 18 November next year at the yet-to-be-built Circuit of the Americas, would happen.

"The truth is they're not complying with the terms and conditions of the contract," he said. "And as we make the contract, we will award, the event or not award the event."

Construction was halted at the Texas circuit last month.

The race would mark a return to the United States for Formula One after the last grand prix held at Indianapolis in 2007.

The United States is due to hold another race in New Jersey, on a street circuit against a backdrop of the Manhattan skyline, in 2013.

Bahrain's place on the calendar 22 for April will remain uncertain, with the race kept on this year's calendar and rolled back until events forced it to be cancelled.

A bomb placed under a vehicle exploded near the British embassy in Bahrain's capital Manama on Sunday, causing no casualties.

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