Yet another attempt to bring the New York skyline to formula one has emerged.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the mayors of New Jersey townships Weehawken and West New York have revealed talks with private investors to put together a street race by 2013.
"In these uncertain economic times when every direct and indirect revenue source is vital, our own formula one race could be a very positive boost to our citizens," mayors Richard Turner and Felix Roque said in a joint statement.
"This said, we need to ensure that the financial benefits from the privilege of having these races in our towns are equitably shared and that no tax dollars are used."
"The investor group has already told us that our towns would be substantially compensated annually," they added.
A spokesman for New Jersey governor Chris Christie said the mayors have held preliminary talks about the proposal.
"The prospect of having Formula One come to New Jersey is exciting," he said.
Austin is scheduled to host its inaugural US grand prix on a purpose-built circuit next year.
The Wall Street Journal said Bernie Ecclestone could not be reached for comment.
Ecclestone confirms Briatore made Gribkowsky payment
Bernie Ecclestone has played down his friend Flavio Briatore's involvement in the Gerhard Gribkowsky bribery affair.
A German newspaper this week said banned former Renault boss Briatore was involved in the F1 chief executive's payment of millions to the jailed German banker.
Ecclestone told the British newspaper Daily Express: "In no shape or form is Briatore involved in this.
"He did make a payment for me but only because I asked him after this man Gribkowsky threatened to make trouble for me and said he did not want the money paid direct from the UK.
"Briatore did me a favour and, far from being dragged into this, I told the German prosecutor about it. That is how his name has appeared," said the 80-year-old.
Ecclestone scoffed at claims the scandal could bring him down as F1 chief and even see him jailed.
"The end? Of course not," said the Briton.
"I will be doing what I do best for a while yet -- making good deals to keep a lot of people happy and well off in F1. Some might not want me to continue but I enjoy what I do. That is what I'll be judged on."
Report - Kubica making steady return from injury
Robert Kubica is making slow yet steady progress as he pushes to return to formula one.
Germany's Die Welt reports that the Pole, horribly injured in a February rally crash, is now able to move his right hand, fingers and arm, despite initial fears the limb would have to be amputated.
The report said Kubica's arm will "probably never recover entirely", but dexterity has returned to most of the fingers even if the "middle finger still causes problems".
"His thumb has recovered full movement," said Welt writer Burkhard Nuppeney.
Renault team owner Gerard Lopez said recently that Kubica might be invited to drive in a Friday practice session later this year; an offer rejected vehemently by his manager Daniele Morelli.
"If Robert comes back," he said, "he doesn't want gifts or kindly-meant offers."
Kubica's friend Fernando Alonso understands.
"If you've been through so much and given as much as Robert has suffered to come back, you only want to come back for one reason -- to have the same goals as before."
The Spaniard is convinced that, also psychologically, Kubica will be able to put the chapter behind him.
"The accident was bad luck and a man of his calibre can shake it off, particularly as it had nothing to do with formula one," said Alonso.
Sutil, Hulkenberg linked with Barrichello's seat
The names Adrian Sutil and Nico Hulkenberg are suddenly being linked with the F1 seat currently occupied by Rubens Barrichello.
With Williams happy with Pastor Maldonado and his links with important Venezuelan backer PDVSA, the Grove based team at present is refusing to say the 39-year-old veteran Barrichello will surely stay beyond 2011.
Increasingly, the Brazilian's rhetoric is sounding impatient, and Germany's Auto Motor und Sport reports he is calling a halt to the practice of using his car as a test mule for struggling Williams' technical experiments.
"Never have I wanted to be a test driver," he is quoted as saying.
The report said Barrichello, with a conventional setup, was finally back to his dominant self in comparison to Maldonado in Hungary.
But at the same time, rumours swirled in the paddock that Germans Sutil - the current Force India driver - and 2010 Williams rookie Hulkenberg are in the running to replace Barrichello next year.
And Barrichello, the most experienced driver in F1 history, sounds frustrated.
"Our car cooks the rear tyres," he said. "The driveability of the engine is bad and in slippery conditions it's even worse. No matter what we do, we can't make the tyre problem go away.
"We are bringing too many new parts to the car and only confusing ourselves," he added.
FIA to approve India track this month
F1's governing body will inspect the new Indian grand prix venue at the end of August.
The Buddh circuit near New Delhi is nearing completion ahead of its inaugural formula one race on October 30.
The Asian Age reports that FIA official Charlie Whiting will inspect the venue so that it can be homologated on September 1.
"We have been sending reports to the FIA on a fortnightly basis and they are completely satisfied with the progress," said Indian motor sport clubs president Vicky Chandhok.
"Actually the final inspection was scheduled for the first week of August and the track was ready for it. But (Whiting) confirmed that he will be coming to New Delhi only on August 31."
The report said the pits, grandstands, hospitality area and media centre are complete, with the final layer of asphalt to be laid in mid September.
"The basic track is ready with kerbs and tecpro barriers in place," added Chandhok.
Mercedes targets ex-Ferrari chief Costa - report
Mercedes has reportedly targeted ousted Ferrari technical director Aldo Costa.
In May, as Ferrari grappled with its new 150 Italia car, the famous Maranello based team said the Italian had stepped down.
It emerged a few days ago that Costa has left the carmaker completely but is on what is known in F1 as "gardening leave" until the end of the year.
The specialist Italian magazine Autosprint reports that Mercedes, headed by another former Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn, has targeted Costa.
We reported recently that the Brackley based team is on a recruitment drive to boost its staff numbers to the height of big three teams Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari.
Autosprint said Brawn told Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche at the Nurburgring that Mercedes' struggles in 2010 and 2011 have been due in part to the team's comparatively small size.
"So he (Brawn) received the go-ahead for the recruitment campaign," said the report.
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