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Bernie Ecclestone confident Austin will remain on 2016 F1 calendar

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Bernie Ecclestone is certain the U.S. Grand Prix will go ahead this season, despite a cut in state funding for the venue last year.

The owners of the Circuit of the Americas cast doubt over the 2016 event at the end of last year after revealing their state subsidy had been cut by 20%. The news followed a soaking wet grand prix weekend in Austin that resulted in a drop in attendance figures and concessions sales on previous years.

In November circuit boss Bobby Epstein was quoted saying: "To use a technical term, I think we're screwed."

However, Ecclestone has now told the BBC he is "absolutely" certain the race will return to Austin this year and has "no doubts" the funding gap will be solved.

"The state funding depends on the amount of people that attend the race," he added. "As it rained and a lot of people didn't turn up, their funding went down."

The event is listed as provisional on the 2016 F1 calendar due to the uncertainty over the circuit's financial situation.