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Turkey Hopes to Attract F1 Racing

January 22, 2002

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ANKARA, Turkey (AP) _ Turkish authorities want to build an auto racing track near Istanbul in the hopes of landing a spot on the Formula One calendar.

Turkish officials believe a grand prix would attract tourism to the country. Turkey has bid unsuccessfully several times for the Olympics.

``Formula One has immense economic powers, it brings immense tourism revenues,″ Mumtaz Tahincioglu, head of the Turkish Automobile Federation, said Monday. ``It would be an economic advantage for the country.″

Turkish auto racing authorities have located an abandoned state-owned coal mine in Kemerburgaz, on the outskirts of Istanbul, which they hope to turn into an auto racing track within three years, Tahincioglu said.

Tahincioglu said the federation needs to raise $60 million to $70 million to construct the circuit.

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