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Toyota May Pull Plug on Japanese Grand Prix

By Motortrend India Staff   |   31 May,2009

The Fuji Speedway circuit in Japan is contemplating giving up next year’s Formula One Japanese Grand Prix, a move aimed at cutting costs. The world’s largest car manufacturer Toyota Motors funded motorsports brand ‘Fuji Speedway’ is seriously considering pulling the plug on the car racing event.

A spokesperson for Toyota Motors said that Fuji Speedway was considering all options in continuing with the sport as the global economic crisis has been subduing motor racing events across the world. The funding company Toyota too has posted billion dollar losses in the last fiscal year.

Japan’s other major car manufacturers, Honda, Subaru and Suzuki too have cut down on auto racing. Honda pulled its F1 team out last December and Subaru and Suzuki have quit participating in the world rally championship.

Fuji Speedway has had a turbulent Formula One history after it became the first to host a Japanese F1 race in 1976. A major event involving a car crash, where two spectators were killed, saw them retreat quietly for the next 30 years. Though it did return again to the F1 scene in 2007, it appears as if both time and fortune do not favour Fuji Speedway. It is expected that Honda’s Suzuka will host this year's race and after that Fuji will alternatively get to host the event assuming that it doesn’t pull out completely from the scene.

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