Sebastian Vettel became the first Formula 1 driver to sample the planned route of the proposed Grand Prix of America in New Jersey on Monday, as part of a media tour that also included a guest appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman. (Click here for video clip.)
The reigning World Champion drove an Infiniti IPL G Coupe round the 3.2-mile course in Weehawken and West New York, slated to hold a grand prix from the 2013 season.
"It's a pretty steep uphill and there are some nice corners up there, which makes it really fun to drive," Vettel told the Associated Press. "It's truly unique. And this [the Manhattan skyline] is unreal.
"Certainly the up-and-down aspect, with the elevation, that's something the drivers always enjoy. And you still have bumps built in even if you resurface, and that gives a little bit of soul to the course."
Although the circuit is yet to be officially confirmed for 2013 organizers have a 10-year deal to host F1 and construction has already begun in a select few areas.
Leo Hindery, a founding chairman and former CEO of the YES Network, which is promoting the race, said Vettel's attendance also served as a riposte to rumors of financial struggles with the event.
"I don't know where these rumors are coming from, but this race is going forward," he told USA Today. "If we had any doubt, we wouldn't have brought Sebastian and all these people here today."
F1 is set to return to the U.S. this year with a race at Austin, Texas. Indianapolis hosted the last USGP back in 2007.