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DECEMBER 22, 2000

Hungarian GP given temporary approval

THE Hungarian Grand Prix has been given a reprieve after the country's government excluded "world-class motorsport events" from the newly-imposed tobacco ban.

The event, which is held at the Hungaroring, is sponsored by cigarette manufacturer Marlboro, and its future was threatened when the government implemented a ban on the advertising of all tobacco in the media from July 2001 and all outdoor advertising from January 2002.

But government officials have excluded the Hungary GP, which brings major revenue to the country, from the ruling and the 2001 race will now go ahead as planned on August 19.

"We had feared inestimable damage," Hungaroring boss Ferenc Studniczky said. "The official name of the race is the Marlboro Hungarian Championship and we did not have much hope of a reprieve."