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Ecclestone sets Texas deadline

Bernie Ecclestone sets bosses at the Circuit of the Americas a deadline of next week to come up with the money to host the 2012 United States Grand Prix

Bernie Ecclestone has set organisers of the United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas a deadline of next week to agree a contract to allow the race to take place next year.

Work was halted at the Circuit of the Americas earlier this week following a disagreement over the contract for the race, with Ecclestone then insisting that he would drop the race from the calendar if circuit bosses didn't sign up to an agreement and show they had the funds required to pay for the event.

The FIA World Motor Sport Council is due to meet in December in New Delhi, where a decision would likely to taken over whether the race will go ahead or not, but Ecclestone said he needed to know before then if the circuit was in a position to host the event.

"It needs to be before that," he told Reuters. "We don't need any deadlines, having to thrash around at the last minute to do something. It's gone on long enough.

"They have got next week anyway. We are going to be in Brazil so they can come back next week."

Ecclestone added that the current situation wasn't simply a case of brinkmanship on his part and that he had been doing his best to ensure a deal is signed.

"What do you want me to do, wait until next year?" he said. "To put all our cars on it, run around the circuit and everything and come back with no money? The teams want paying.

"It's not brinkmanship, it never has been with me," he said. "I've been trying to do a deal now with these people for 18 months or more...if they had the money, I'm sure there would be no problem."

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