The seventh annual Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix will likely return to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on July 22-24, 2011, again with support from the AMA Pro Road Race series, with final confirmation coming with the release of the official FIM calendar later this month.That the AMA is returning is something of a surprise. There were serious discussions about replacing the AMA with the other two World Championship classes, Moto2 and 125cc, but, in the end, a deal wasn't possible.The problem was dates. Had the Laguna Seca weekend run as the race prior to the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, a week or two apart, the tracks could have shared the shipping costs of the other world championship classes, and Laguna Seca could have borne the larger sanctioning fee for the three races. But with Indy keeping their same end of August date, a deal couldn't be reached. Laguna Seca pays a reduced sanctioning fee to rightsholders Dorna for hosting just the MotoGP class.

So the AMA riders will be back in support, with three classes, American SuperBike, Daytona SportBike and SuperSport."The best riders in the world and the U.S. will once again be together to treat our fans to incredible on-track action," Gill Campbell, CEO/general manager for Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca said in a press release. "Having Americans Ben Spies on the factory Yamaha team and Nicky Hayden on the factory Ducati team - I can only hope for one of our own on the top step of the podium."In the same release, Bob Starr, Communications Manager of Yamaha Motorsports Group, said, "Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca represents the true heart and soul of motorcycle road racing in the U.S. And to have both the Yamaha MotoGP and AMA teams together at our home track is very special for all racing fans."Yamaha announced at this year's race that they'd agreed to extend their sponsorship as the Official Motorcycle of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix through 2014, the length of the MotoGP agreement. The new agreement incorporates genuine Yamaha Parts and Accessories.All general admission tickets, paddock passes, grandstand seats, parking and general camping for the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix will go on sale November 3, 2010 by phone at (800) 327-7322 or on-line at www.mazdaraceway.com.

MotoGP Headlines

Henny Ray Abrams | Contributing Editor

Abrams is the longest-serving contributor at Cycle News. Over the course of his 35-some years of writing and shooting photos, he’s covered events from MotoGP to the Motocross World Championship - and everything in between.

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