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Las Vegas - it's not over yet

THERE may not be a United States Grand Prix on the 1996 Formula 1 calendar, but that doesn't mean that F1 has given up hope of breaking into America.

We hear that the talks between Bernie Ecclestone's US negotiator Tommy Baker and the Las Vegas city authorities continue, with a view to holding a race at the end of 1997, and that Ecclestone has given the go-ahead for an event if the Las Vegas people want to make it happen. In response we hear that the authorities have given their tentative agreement to a deal, although there are still a lot of details - notably the financing - to be organized. A definite decision on a race is expected in January.

As gambling becomes more and more widespread in the United States, Las Vegas is currently trying very hard to find new audiences to visit the city, which bills itself as the Entertainment Capital of the World. It is the second biggest tourist destination in the United States - after Florida's Disneyworld, which is also negotiating with the F1 authorities - and a Grand Prix would undoubtedly help it attract a bigger and wider audience.

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