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Argentina eyes F1 return

ESPNF1 Staff
December 17, 2011 « Hulkenberg and di Resta confirmed at Force India | F1 will struggle in the US - Ecclestone »
Argentina last held a grand prix in 1998 © Sutton Images

Argentina has become the latest country to show an interest in hosting a grand prix after ground was broken ahead of the construction of a new circuit 80km outside Buenos Aires.

The South American country last held a grand prix in 1998 and it has a long history in Formula One as the opening round of the season for many years. Velociudad SpeedCity is a new circuit that will be built to FIA Grade 1 safety regulations, meaning it will be capable of holding a grand prix.

The designers of the 5.5km circuit are hoping it will contribute to the local area in Zarate and clearly stated F1 as a goal.

"We are really proud to contribute with our design to create a new destination for F1, which always means an economic catalyst for the area and produces global exposure," John Rhodes, associate principal of the circuit's designers Populous said in a statement. "During the last five years we have developed technology, software, and design techniques through the use of simulation to physically test the design of a circuit. These pioneering techniques have enabled the creation of a topographically exciting and challenging medium-speed circuit on what was a relatively square and flat 63 hectare site."

Argentina is the latest country to join a long list of potential F1 venues, including Mexico and South Africa, however, the construction of the new circuit puts it in good stead to join the likes of Austin, Russia and New Jersey, which will all join the calendar in the next three years.