The Victorian government has played down the prospect of the under-fire Australian Grand Prix being moved to a permanent circuit outside of Melbourne.
As speculation continues about the race's future beyond its 2015 contract, Australian Grand Prix Corporation chairman Ron Walker recalled recent plans for a purpose-built facility at Avalon, an airport 50 kilometres south of the city.
Bernie Ecclestone said recently he regretted not pushing organisers to build such a venue ten years ago, before the cost to taxpayers of hosting the race on the temporary Albert Park layout became such an issue.
"Now that Mr Ecclestone has raised the issue again, maybe we might go to Avalon and look at the plans," Walker told reporters in Melbourne.
I am told that a purpose-built track would cost around $300 million
But tourism minister Louise Asher said those plans are too expensive.
"I am told that a purpose-built track would cost around $300 million, and that's not $300 million that the government has got," she told the Age.
"Part of the reason for securing the GP was the city location, and that's part of the reason it is here," she added.
David Coulthard on Wednesday admitted he is disappointed about the ongoing saga surrounding the Australian Grand Prix and its future.
"Every time I come down here we see all the anti-Grand Prix debate, and we don't get that anywhere else in the world," he told SEN radio.