New Jersey GP application formally submitted

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The proposed Grand Prix of America in New Jersey has taken a step forward after it was confirmed last night that the application to host the race has been submitted to the national organization, ACCUS (Automobile Competitions Committee for the United States), paving the way for it to claim a place on the 2014 calendar.

The first draft calendar was released earlier this month, omitting the race from the schedule as Mexico City became a surprise inclusion, having last hosted a race in 1992. However, the organizers in New Jersey insisted that this was purely because the application had not been submitted to the national association, with race promoter Leo Hindery Jr. explaining earlier this month that he fully expected to be on the final calendar despite the setback. The Russian Grand Prix also missed its national deadline, yet it still appeared on the draft schedule.

Speaking to NBC Sports, a spokesperson from GP America said: “The ACCUS listing application was completed and submitted, as planned.”

Further to that, a report from Autosport in Singapore states that a space has been made for New Jersey on a revised ‘draft’ calendar for 2014, featuring an unprecedented twenty-two races. The slot for the race at Port Imperial has been listed as “to be confirmed” on June 1st, one week before the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal.

The World Motor Sport Council is set to meet at the end of the month in Croatia to finalize a provisional calendar. Should the race in New Jersey go ahead as planned in 2014, it would be the first time in thirty years that America has hosted two grands prix in one season.

Lauda labels Verstappen USGP penalty ‘the worst I’ve ever seen’

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Mercedes Formula 1 non-executive chairman Niki Lauda has called the FIA stewards’ decision to penalize Max Verstappen for his last-lap pass on Kimi Raikkonen in Sunday’s United States Grand Prix as “the worst I’ve ever seen”.

Verstappen charged from 16th on the grid to take third place from Raikkonen on the last lap after a stunning fight through the field, completing the fightback with a bold pass in the final sector.

However, the stewards stripped Verstappen of P3 after he appeared to put all four wheels off the circuit when riding the kerb to pass Raikkonen, causing outcry in the F1 community.

Speaking to reporters after the race in Austin, Lauda condemned the stewards’ decision, slamming them for interfering in the late fight.

“We had meetings at the start of the year to see how far stewards should go in decisions during a race because it always says ‘under investigation’,” Lauda said, as quoted by Crash.net.

“So we complained about that and we agreed all together that the stewards would not interfere – very simple.

“If the driver goes over another and upside down, only then would they weigh in. That was at the beginning of last year.

“For six months it was OK, but this decision was the worst I’ve ever seen. He did nothing wrong.”

Lauda said F1 team bosses would discuss stewarding at the next Strategy Group meeting, which is due to be held in the next two weeks.

“These are racing drivers. We are not on the normal roads and it is ridiculous to destroy the sport with these kind of decisions,” Lauda said.

“At the next strategy meeting, we will put it back on the agenda and start all over again, because we cannot do that.

“They go too far and interfere and there was nothing to interfere with. It was normal overtaking.”