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Abu Dhabi second last on 2012 Formula One season calendar

Turkey and Bahrain continue to retain slot for the upcoming season with the US returning with a new race in Texas.

BARCELONA // Brazil will host the last race next year but the UAE capital continues to be at the business end of the season and could well still see the world champion being decided.

In a packed calendar released today with a record 21 races, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will be second from last while the Turkish Grand Prix has retained its place, subject to confirmation.

The race at the Istanbul circuit had been called into question when local organisers said it faced the axe because of a disagreement over payments to commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

The calendar issued by the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) after a meeting of the world motor sport council in Barcelona listed Turkey as the sixth round of the season on May 6.

Bahrain, whose season-opening race was postponed this season but reinstated on Friday to an October 30 slot on a 20-race calendar, will again be the first round of the 2012 championship on March 11.

But in a departure from this season, Korea will move to April 22 from their current October slot.

The United States return with a new race in Austin, Texas, on June 17 and the weekend after the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal.

The season will end with a string of five long-haul races for the Europe-based teams with Singapore on September 30, followed by Japan, India, Abu Dhabi and Brazil as the finale on November 25.

Calendar:

March 11 - Bahrain

March 18 - Australia

April 1 - Malaysia

April 8 - China

April 22 - South Korea

May 6 - Turkey*

May 20 - Spain

May 27 - Monaco

June 10 - Canada

June 17 - United States

July 1 - Valencia, Spain

July 15 - Britain

July 29 - Germany

Aug 5 - Hungary

Sept 2 - Belgium

Sept 9 - Italy

Sept 30 - Singapore

Oct 14 - Japan

Oct 28 - India

Nov 11 - Abu Dhabi

Nov 25 - Brazil

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