The IZOD IndyCar Series might be heading to the Ferrari-owned Mugello race track in Italy, according to reports in La Repubblica
The newspaper suggested that series officials have had preliminary discussions with the management of the 3.2-mile, 15-turn facility with a view to staging an IndyCar event, with suggestions that it might even happen as early as 2013.
"We've had discussions with a variety of potential promoters and that includes initial, exploratory discussions with Mugello," series CEO Randy Bernard told the newspaper on Tuesday.
The publication of the 2013 IndyCar season calendar at the start of last week
raised eyebrows by including a month-long gap without any races after the first day of September, before the final two events of the season are held in October. That left many speculating that this gap had been intentionally left open for a 20th race to be added to the line-up later down the line.
At the time, prime candidates for the seemingly-vacant slot were said to be either an extra oval race at Kentucky Speedway or a new street race in Providence, Rhode Island, but in a teleconference last week Bernard had quickly dismissed the chances of any of them happening as early as next year.
"We had races and promoters wanting to have additional races [in 2013]," he said. "They just were not able to pull it off in time of our deadlines, and I think it's real important that everyone understands that we have to stick to a formal plan and I think that we did that this year.
"In regards to 2014, we would love to see Providence, Rhode Island," he continued. "If they are going to do it, it needs to happen sooner rather than later because we are not going to increase our schedule by a significant amount of events, which means there's a very limited amount of races that we are going to bring on anew.
"There are a couple of markets in Canada that are interested; Providence is interested; you've heard New Orleans is interested. There are quite a few markets out there," he said. "There's not room for everybody, but I guess the big key here is which ones get onto our schedule early enough to be on 2014."
Currently, the series has two weekend events staged outside the US: the Sao Paulo event Brazil at the start of May before the Indianapolis 500, and the doubleheader on the streets of Toronto in mid-July. The Edmonton Indy is no longer on the schedule
after the local promoters filed for bankruptcy.