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Hamilton expects 'close racing' in the USA

ESPN Staff
November 9, 2012 « Mercedes pair looking forward to US Grand Prix | Perez expecting home support in US Grand Prix »
The Circuit of the Americas is a brand new circuit in Austin, Texas © Sutton Images

Lewis Hamilton is confident the Circuit of the Americas will lend itself to close racing ahead of the US Grand Prix next weekend.

Formula One will return to the USA after six years away when it arrives in Austin next week and its new home will be a Herman Tilke-designed, purpose-built circuit. Hamilton has driven the layout on the McLaren simulator and is confident it will be an interesting track that should encourage close racing.

"I have to admit - I'm absolutely made-up that we're going back to the States," Hamilton said. "It's a fantastic country and a place where our sport truly deserves to be. I think the Circuit Of The Americas looks like it could also be the place that modern Formula One finally calls home. I've only driven it on the computer and in the sim, but I think it's going to be a track that drivers enjoy, which produces some great, close racing, and which fans will quickly love.

"This is a new circuit, a new challenge and a new opportunity - I'm definitely looking to be the first grand prix winner at the Circuit Of The Americas."

His McLaren team-mate Jenson Button is also looking forward to driving the new track and believes it has taken some of the best aspects of existing circuits elsewhere on the F1 calendar.

"On paper, the circuit looks to have a little bit of everything - the plan-view certainly looks familiar; you can see elements of the Maggotts/Becketts complex from Silverstone; there's a reverse of Istanbul Park's Turn Eight, too; and I can even see a bit of the Hockenheim infield, too.

"Whether those elements will blend together to make a satisfying whole remains to be seen, but there are a couple of long straights into tight corners, too, which should at least open up the possibility of overtaking.

"I think we're in for a fantastic weekend - I really cannot wait to get out to Austin and see the city, the people and the track. I think it's going to be brilliant."