Nurburgring keeps 2013 German Grand Prix as deal struck with Ecclestone

Nurburgring is renowned for its daunting technical challenges and has the nickname of the "Green Hell".

Story highlights

  • Red Bull team principal Christian Horner signs new multi-year deal
  • Horner has led Red Bull to three straight F1 constructors' titles
  • Ferrari to unveil new F138 car at Maranello Friday
  • Nurburgring confirmed as venue for 2013 German Grand Prix

Nurburgring was confirmed Thursday as the venue for the 2013 German Grand Prix after reaching a deal with F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone.

The famous circuit, nicknamed the "Green Hell", alternates hosting its home grand prix with Hockenheim, but financial problems left this year's staging in doubt.

A statement on the official Nurburgring website said: "the long period of uncertainty regarding the venue for the pinnacle of motor sport in Germany is over."

Thomas Schmidt, the managing director of the circuit, thanked Ecclestone for his support.

"With his commitment to the legendary circuit, he makes a significant and valuable contribution to the Nurburgring," he said.

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Ecclestone granted the hosting rights for this season rather than passing them over to Hockenheim to run the German Grand Prix for the second straight year.

"I appreciate the Nurburgring and its history very much," Ecclestone was quoted.

"Even today, this circuit makes the highest demands on drivers and teams."

Tickets for the event from July 5-7 will officially go on sale next Monday.

Lewis Hamilton won the 2011 race for McLaren, but will return in 2013 driving for the German car maker Mercedes.

Meanwhile, Red Bull principal Christian Horner has extended his deal with the team after leading them to double world title successes for the past three seasons.

The 39-year-old Englishman has been at the helm since the team was launched by Austrian billionaire owner Dietrich Mateschitz in 2005.

Read: Webber shrugs off tensions at Red Bull

Horner enjoyed success as a young driver in junior levels of motor sport before forging his career in team ownership and management.

The new "multi-year" contract for Horner was confirmed on the official F1 website Thursday.

Red Bull has dominated F1 since 2010, with Germany's Sebastian Vettel claiming a hat-trick of world titles with the team taking the constructors' titles to back him up.

Vettel and Mark Webber will again be the driver line-up for 2013, with their new RB9 car set to be unveiled at their headquarters in Milton Keynes in England Sunday.

Vettel narrowly held off Fernando Alonso to win the 2012 title and the Spanish Ferrari star will be hoping his new machinery for the coming season gives him the opportunity to go one better.

Ferrari will launch the F138 at their test track in Maranello, Italy Friday.

It derives its name from a combination of the current years and the number of cylinders in its engine, the team said in advance.

It will be the 59th car raced by Ferrari in F1 and Alonso will first test it at Barcelona on February 19.

Before that, Felipe Massa and test driver Pedro de la Rosa will put it through its paces at Jerez.

McLaren unveiled its new car, the Mercedes-powered MP4-2 Thursday, hoping they will start 2013 as they finished 2012 with victories in the United States and Brazil.

"It is exactly the same color scheme and I think it looks similar to last year, but it is completely different to last year under the skin," Jenson Button told AFP.

"And that's good for all of us," added the Briton who will be partnered by Mexico's Sergio Perez for the new season after the departure of Hamilton.