|AP Photo/David Longstreath
BANGKOK (AP) -- Thailand's government sports authority says it has struck an in-principle deal to host a Formula 1 race in Bangkok in 2014, with negotiations ongoing about the hosting fee, according to a report in The Nation newspaper.
Kanokphand Chulakasem, governor of the Sports Authority of Thailand, was quoted as saying "Formula 1 has decided to include Thailand in its 2014 season calendar" with a race slated for November.
He said the government will fund 60 percent of the cost, with the rest coming from sponsors including Red Bull -- half Thai-owned -- and the Singha brewing group. The SAT governor said talks were proceeding between F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone and representatives of Red Bull chief Chalerm Yoovidhya.
"Once the negotiations are complete, we will bring this before the cabinet for discussion and approval," Kanokphand was quoted as saying. "We will sign a deal only after we get the nod from the government."
He said the hosting fee would not be more than that paid by Singapore in its just-completed contract, which he said was 1.2 billion baht ($39.2 million) per year.
Areas reportedly under consideration for a circuit include the historic Rajdamnoen government district in central Bangkok, the city's Klong Toei port area or the northern suburb of Muang Thong Thani. Kanokphand said there had been feasibility talks with F1 officials about the prospective areas.