Motor racing-Valencia in talks to cut Formula One costs

MADRID, July 30 Mon Jul 30, 2012 2:45pm BST

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MADRID, July 30 (Reuters) - Valencia regional president Alberto Fabra will continue talks with Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone to try to find a way to cut the cost of staging the European Grand Prix, a local official said on Monday.

Fabra was "in a process of negotiation to reduce the cost of the Formula One levy", Serafin Castellano, secretary general of the region's ruling party, was quoted as saying in local media.

"(Formula One) is very important not only from an image point of view but also due to the economic impact, the creation of jobs and what that means for the Valencia region," Castellano added.

Spain, home of Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, is the only country with two races a year, the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona and the Valencia event.

The two cities will begin alternating from next year, with the Catalan capital hosting a race in 2013 and Valencia in 2014.

Valencia is trying to reduce the cost of staging its race as cash-strapped local administrations are under pressure to make budget cuts as part of a central government austerity drive.

The region was the first to seek financial assistance from Madrid and used several state loans to repay its debts during the first half of 2012. (Reporting by Iain Rogers, editing by Ed Osmond)

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