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'Monza needs €100million'

'Monza needs €100million'

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'Monza needs €100million'

'Monza needs €100million'

Italian Grand Prix boss Angelo Sticchi Damiani says he is locked in "complicated and difficult" negotiations with Liberty Media over the future of Monza's Formula 1 race. The Italian GP is one of a number of traditional events struggling to meet financial demands.

A recent claim from Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn that all current 21 races will remain next year is a boon for fans in Italy, Great Britain, German and Mexico -where the long-term status of races remains up in the air.

It was reported this week that Italy's Lega political party introduced a bill to parliament pledging €10 million a year in state support to safeguard the "traditional grand prix", but Damiani says Monza needs more.

"We have said on several occasions that Monza needs important works and that today the hypothesis is a total amount of about 100 million," he told Agenzia di Stampa Italpress.

Monza's current contract expires this year.

"Thanks to the Lombardy region, we have managed to find a balance this year, and we must renew for the next few years," Damiani said.

"There are very tight, complicated and difficult negotiations with Liberty Media who inherited too many expensive and unsustainable contracts."

He is referring to a bevy of other F1 circuits who are pushing Liberty to drop their prices, but Damiani says it is Monza that it "perhaps the most important event of the world championship".

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Damiani also talked about Charles Leclerc, whose newfound success at Ferrari he says is no surprise to him.

"Leclerc is a phenomenon and we knew it and had the proof of it," he said.

"What happened in the last grand prix is known -- there was a short circuit of a control unit, which can happen and is unfortunately difficult to predict.

"But Leclerc has made us dream and we are convinced that both he and Vettel will win the world championship this year."

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