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Last Updated: Monday, 6 February 2006, 14:03 GMT
New lease of life for Silverstone
Formula One cars prepare for the start of the 2004 British Grand Prix
Silverstone could be set for major redevelopment under new plans
Silverstone is set to be leased out as part of major new plans to renovate the home of the British Grand Prix.

Owner the British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) is backing a blueprint from developers St Modwen to greatly overhaul the Northamptonshire circuit.

St Modwen's sister company Northern Racing would then take over the running of the circuit for the next 25 years.

BRDC chairman Stuart Rolt has written to members to "strongly recommend" they accept the plan in this month's vote.

Northern Racing runs nine horse-racing courses, including Uttoxeter and Chepstow.

In his memo to members, Rolt revealed that the BRDC considered several options on how to secure Silverstone's long-term future, including "voluntarily relinquishing the British Grand Prix".

But that option, he insisted, has since been discounted as the race "is a key part of the club's activities and is a significant element of the value of Silverstone".

Rolt also revealed that the BRDC's view was that a redevelopment of the track was not possible without the help of a major developer.

And he said that day-to-day operations are also becoming increasingly difficult.

He wrote: "The inescapable reality is that present day circuit operations, heavily dependent as they are on one high-profile event, involve substantial commercial risk."

The terms of the deal with Northern Racing include an obligation to promote the British Grand Prix until 2009.

And it incorporates a need to "to seek renewal" of the deal with F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone beyond that date.

Rolt urged his members to back the scheme to "safeguard motor racing in the UK and the future of the British Grand Prix".

BRDC split on Silverstone future
31 Jan 06 |  Formula One
Silverstone eyes 600m facelift
04 Oct 05 |  Formula One
Silverstone seals British GP deal
09 Dec 04 |  Formula One
Stewart to quit as BRDC president
23 Jan 06 |  Motorsport


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