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Sunday, 7 July, 2002, 13:20 GMT 14:20 UK
Silverstone jam-free for big race
Silverstone Grand Prix
Trouble for Jenson Button at Silverstone
New traffic measures costing millions of pounds have cut the queues for the thousands of motor racing fans attending the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Northamptonshire police said most race-going motorists were at the circuit by 1200 BST and it had been a jam-free morning.

The only delays were for spectators travelling by helicopter because of a low cloud base.

A total of 60,000 motor racing fans are at the circuit for the British Grand Prix, which was under threat two years ago because the infrastructure could not cope with visitor numbers.


I have been very impressed as it has all gone very smoothly

Police spokesman Andy Roberts
But new access roads and car parks meant the sport's governing body, the FIA, passed the circuit.

And this year saw the opening of a new bypass on the A43, which was a notorious traffic blackspot in previous years.

A large section of the normally busy A43 heading towards and away from the circuit has become a one-way system for the weekend event.

Police spokesman Andy Roberts said: "I have been looking out on to five lanes of traffic coming into Silverstone and I am delighted to say it is all moving."

He said there had been a slight "stop start" delay earlier as drivers waited for the car parks to open.

Juan-Pablo Montoya
Montoya at Silverstone

"A large volume of traffic heading towards the circuit is being successfully brought in a lot quicker than it has in the past."

Mr Roberts added: "I have been very impressed as it has all gone very smoothly."

Many of the new changes were brought in following chaos two years ago when a combination of large volumes of race traffic and severe wet weather blighted the event.

Many drivers became bogged down in field car parks and others were forced to sit for hours in their vehicles.

Mr Roberts said: "Now the approach road is five lanes wide, there are huge hard standing car parks and with the one-way system we are better able to control the flow of traffic."

On Saturday, police said they were "delighted" with the changes which allowed almost 40,000 fans to attend the qualifying session for Sunday's race.

Crime this year is also down with just two arrests on Saturday compared with 18 by the same time last year.


Click here to go to BBC Northamptonshire
See also:

07 Jul 02 | Formula One
06 Jul 02 | Wales
06 Jul 02 | Science/Nature
05 Jul 02 | Science/Nature
10 Jul 01 | Formula One
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