Portugal has emerged as a contender to fill the current vacancy on the F1 calendar after Bernie Ecclestone revealed there has been interest shown by the Algarve circuit.

A vacancy on the calendar was created by the decision to delay the first F1 race in New Jersey, with the FIA re-jigging the schedule last year to make space for an additional race in Europe.

Turkey and Austria were both mooted as possible options to fill the date created on 21 July but it appeared that the calendar would remain at 19 races when Ecclestone ruled out a race at the Red Bull Ring back in December.

Now however, Ecclestone has revealed that Portugal could be an option for 2013 after declaring an interest in a race, with France also in the mix.

"Frankly, I don't know," he told Salzburger Nachrichten when asked about the vacancy. "For the free date, there is interest from France and now also Portugal with the new Algarve track."

Portugal last hosted an F1 race back in 1996, with Jacques Villeneuve beating Damon Hill to victory in a Williams 1-2.

The Algarve circuit held F1 tests in late 2008 and early 2009.



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