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This year was the first in Formula One history that had absolutely no presence in North America. But that could change for next year if the latest reports from Canada are any indication, as insiders suggest that a new deal between race organizers and government officials on the one hand and Bernie Ecclestone on the other is in the closing rounds of negotiations.

Ecclestone pulled the plug on the Canadian Grand Prix – the only F1 race in North America and a longstanding fixture of the F1 calendar – last year after municipal, provincial and federal government officials refused to pay his exorbitant fees. But after a year without the race in Montreal, Ecclestone has reportedly changed his tune and agreed to a substantially reduced (though still highly lucrative) deal with local officials that would cut his fees by a reported $100 million, down from his previous demanded guarantee of $175 million to the governments' counter-offer of $75 million.

The F1 chief's actions are suspected to be influenced by the new Concorde Agreement – F1's secretive profit-sharing deal – with the teams eager to return to North America and Ecclestone weary of losing more manufacturers from the series following the departure of Honda and BMW. Thanks to everyone who sent in tips!

[Source: The Globe and Mail via F1-Live | Image: Paul Gilham/Getty]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      David Ederer
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm glad F1 is back in Montreal, the city loves the race; as for an F1 race in the US I don't think thier is enough interest here. I'd drive to Montreal to see a race again.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @David Ederer
        @ tom winch,

        Yeah, Indy ain't much compared to the U.S.'s more glamorous cities (personally I would prefer a street race along Lake Shore Dr. and Grant Park in Chicago, but I digress), but in terms of total race weekend attendance, Indy easily was in the top 5 every year that it was held (even during the "Father's Day Massacre" in 2005, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_United_States_Grand_Prix).

        Now that Tony George has been told to take his toys and go home to play, maybe we can get the same deal as Montreal on a short term basis until another U.S. city gets a plan together to meet FIA standard just to host a race. Sure it's nice that IMS is only a 15-20 minute drive from my house but IMHO, IMS has never done enough to draw more racing series to race there to generate revenue for the track and the community (at least we have MotoGP now, but where is SBK, Rolex, Grand-Am, ALMS, etc., and WTF is going on with the crapwagons of yesteryear known as IRL and the "Crapwagons Of Today" (I meant COT) known as NASCAR?).
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is a good gesture on Bernie's part to show he's not all idiot.

      Maybe he's thinking of advertising dollars from Best Buy and Youtube.
      I don't know. I'm just excited. Indy is really close ( Cincinnati ), but I'd drive to Montreal for a race weekend.
      • 6 Years Ago
      now if they can get the @sshole to set up a deal for a US race since there's new teams for 2010, that would be perfect - GO DRIVERS!!! :)
        • 6 Years Ago
        agreed there will be american teams there should be an american race.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Why do you think he's trying so hard to get back to Montreal? It's because he's got no takers in the US!

        ...especially now since Tony George has been kicked out of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
      • 6 Years Ago
      There is a bigger shocker. NOT!! Good for the City of Montreal to stand their ground from money hungry Bernie. Now all we need is F1 to come back to good ole' US of A.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Make it happen, because ill be there for sure if it does.
      • 6 Years Ago
      WTF?? Is There that much money on 1 single F1 race to be made? Just for the rights to the race ot be held cost 100M on top of all thats needed to make the race happen? How much money do these people actually make on any given race???

      No wonder F1 will never come to the USA with such cost and fees to hold 1 single event...