WHERE TO NEXT? The famous Parabolica curve at Monza: the current home of the Italian GP, the circuit's F1 contract ends in 2016.Image: Twitter
BOLOGNA, Italy - Imola has emerged as a candidate to hos the Italian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
The future of that country's GP at historic and forested Monza is under a cloud as F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone demands a higher annual race fee.
Monza is Formula 1's oldest and fastest circuit, with cars reaching speeds of more than 360km/h and averaging more than 240km/h a lap.
Now another Italian circuit - Imola, the former long-time San Marino GP venue - has suddenly emerged as a candidate to rejoin the calendar.
ECCLESTONE, MAYOR MEET
It follows a meeting at Ecclestone's London office on Monday (June 15) between the 84-year-old Briton and Daniele Manca, mayor of the town of Imola. The specialist Italian publications Autosprint and Omnicorse each published photographs of the meeting, which was also attended by other Italian officials.
Read: New law casts dark cloud on Monza
Manca said afterwards: "We wanted to show Ecclestone the will of Imola to get back to F1 but above all to do our part to keep an Italian GP."
Such a race was last held at Imola in 2006.
MONZA'S CONTRACT ENDS IN 2017
Manca admitted one idea was to alternation between various (Italian) national circuits with Ferrari-linked media insider Leo Turrini speculating that F1 could switch through Monza, Imola and Ferrari-owned Mugello.
He added: "Ecclestone told us that he never wanted to lose Imola and that it was Enzo Ferrari who asked him first to organise a race at our circuit."
He said the current discussions were about the 2017 season, which would coincide with the end of Monza's contract.
Rob La Salle, a correspondent for Speed Week, wondered: "Is this just a question of him (Ecclestone) putting pressure on Monza?"
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