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Kevin Schwantz advising Austin F1 track on bikes
30 August 2010
1993 500cc world champion Kevin Schwantz is advising the proposed new F1 circuit in Austin, Texas, about the requirements for motorcycling racing.
There are already two current MotoGP venues in the United States - Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
Although sanctioning bodies are always looking around, there is no indication that MotoGP would be interested in the newly proposed USGPF1 circuit - perhaps the first ever purpose-built F1 facility in the US.
Schwantz, who lives in Austin - 15 minutes from the proposed track - is serving in an advisory role to the USGPF1 organisation, as a motorcycle consultant.
Schwantz wants motorcycles to be considered when building the world-class Hermann Tilke designed facility.
The Texan, who currently runs his motorcycle school at Barber Park and other circuits, would like to run a motorcycle school there, and include motorcycle safety.
While he doesn't envision different course configurations, there could be a North End and a South End.
Schwantz said Austin, which is 200 miles or so from Dallas, and Houston, is the eleventh strongest economy in the country.
There is Austin Bergstrom Airport three miles away which has long runways, sufficient to accommodate jumbo jets which are used to transport F1 (or FIM) vehicles, equipment and TV gear.
The Austin circuit is currently planned to start moving dirt the end of this year; and even Tilke admits it will be a long, hard process to meet the deadline of a F1 race at the end of the 2012 season.
Schwantz, who attends some of the planning meetings, said it could take 1500 workers working 24/7.
Stay tuned. It's an ambitious undertaking with a 26-27 month deadline. Some say it will be believed when the first race is held.
By Lynne Huntting
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