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Ecclestone eyes US talent for Formula One grid

ESPNF1 Staff
August 11, 2010 « Austin circuit layout nearing completion | »
Bernie Ecclestone thinks Danica Patrick would be a good fit for Formula One © Getty Images

With plans for the 2012 US Grand Prix at Austin, Texas, continuing apace, Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone and event promoter Tavo Hellmund are sure that the addition of an American driver on the grid would also be a good thing for the sport.

F1 has been without an American driver since Scott Speed left the Toro Rosso team in 2007 and Ecclestone thinks that one driver in particular would create a lot of interest.

"Regarding an American driver, we have tried that lately but obviously what's missing is the right attitude," Ecclestone told the official F1 website. "You can race successfully in the US without the huge effort you need to succeed in Formula One. But to have someone like Danica Patrick in F1 would be a perfect advert."

Hellmund added that although an American driver would be preferable, Mexican GP2 driver Sergio Perez would also generate his fair share of local support.

"Of course it would be fantastic to have an American driver," said Hellmund. "There is that young Mexican driver Perez who is doing a great job in GP2 right now. For him the 2012 US Grand Prix could be a sort of home race: the distance from Austin to Mexico is a mere 250 kilometres."