BRDC bosses say govern­ment fund­ing could save British Grand Prix

Motor Sport News - - Headline News - Kevin Turner

The British Rac­ing Driv­ers’ Club be­lieves govern­ment sup­port could help save the British Grand Prix.

Sil­ver­stone’s owner has a con­tract to run the race un­til 2026, but has sug­gested it may ac­ti­vate its break clause, which would come into ef­fect after the 2019 GP. It has pointed to the cost of host­ing the race as its main is­sue, which puts the GP at risk.

While sev­eral races on the F1 cal­en­dar re­ceive govern­ment fund­ing, tra­di­tion­ally that has not been the case for Sil­ver­stone.

How­ever, BRDC pres­i­dent Derek War­wick be­lieves talks with the govern­ment, F1’s new owner Lib­erty Me­dia and F1 supremo Bernie Ec­cle­stone pro­vide cause for op­ti­mism.

“I have just got a feel­ing that some com­pro­mise will be made, ei­ther with Bernie or the new peo­ple that are now tak­ing over,” said War­wick. “We have had meet­ings with Lib­erty and Chase Carey, he un­der­stands our dilemma.

“We’re talk­ing to govern­ment to see if there is any help there and even Bernie is calling us and say­ing ‘let’s set up a meet­ing and we’ll talk about it’. We will have grands prix past 2019.”

BRDC chair­man John Grant said: “There are strong ar­gu­ments for pub­lic money to be used, but we un­der­stand F1 is seen as a rich sport. I don’t think a straight cash hand­out would be po­lit­i­cally pos­si­ble, but some other form of pub­lic sup­port may be.

“The GP gen­er­ates a lot of in­come for the com­mu­nity and pro­vides a fan­tas­tic shop win­dow for our in­dus­try.”

Govern­ment help could be re­quired to keep British Grand Prix at Sil­ver­stone

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