The FIA World Endurance Championship has confirmed the cancellation of the 6 Hours of Sao Paulo on February 1, with a replacement round at the Circuit of The Americas being announced in its place.

The WEC was due to return to Interlagos in Sao Paulo after a five-year absence as the series' first race of the calendar year, but doubts emerged over the event's viability in recent weeks amid discussions between the championship and the race promoters.

In a statement issued by the WEC on Monday, it was confirmed the 6 Hours of Sao Paulo had been cancelled, claiming "the local Brazilian promoter for the 6 Hours of Sao Paulo has been unable to meet its contractual obligations, and the WEC organisation has been faced with no other alternative than to find a replacement venue."

The WEC also added it "wishes to make clear that it has not experienced any problems with the city of Sao Paulo or the Autodromo José Carlos Pace (Interlagos). It is strictly a major issue with the local promoter."

A replacement round has been confirmed at COTA in Austin, Texas, marking the series' return to the track it last visited in 2017.

The Lone Star Le Mans race will take place on the February 22-23 weekend, avoiding clashes with the NFL Super Bowl and the Formula E race in Santiago one week earlier.

"Firstly we must thank Bobby Epstein and the Circuit of The Americas for accommodating us at relatively short notice. It is an excellent venue, and our fans, competitors and media are now assured of excellent racing in North America not once, but twice in two months," said WEC CEO Gerard Neveu.

“Of course, it is very unfortunate to find ourselves in this position.  The WEC very much regrets this situation and feels very sad for the City of São Paulo and the many thousands of Brazilian motorsport fans.

"Our main concern was our competitors and partners, and we have worked very hard to find a solution which offered the least disruption possible."

 

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