Years ago, when the Australian Grand Prix moved from Adelaide to Melbourne, the circuit infrastructure was sold by the state of South Australia to Victoria.
The grandstands and the hundreds of concrete barriers used to line the Adelaide track were loaded on to trucks and driven cross country to Melbourne where they found themselves in action in Albert Park. It was a logical thing to do. The equipment spends most of its life in storage, but it costs a lot of money to manufacture – and it all takes time.
Meanwhile, the promoters of the Grand Prix of America in New Jersey have been struggling to find the cash to get their race off the ground.
Bernie Ecclestone, who is keen to see a race in the New York metropolitan area, is helping as much as he can and has arranged for New Jersey to save time and money by using the circuit infrastructure that was being employed on the streets of Valencia, in Spain – on the opposite side of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Spanish event started in 2007 and was supposed to run until 2013 , under the terms of a seven-year contract, but the Spaniards ran out of money, and have ended up owing the Formula One group around £50 million in fees.
Bernie has now agreed to write off those debts if the Valencia authorities agree to ship all of its circuit infrastructure across to the Atlantic to New Jersey, so that it can be used on the streets there.
The equipment is believed to include 20 grandstands, five pedestrian bridges, plus specially designed concrete retaining walls that interlink with one another and with debris fencing. There may also be some media equipment and a number of floating platforms.
Ecclestone will no doubt reduce his losses by selling the equipment at less than it would cost the Americans to manufacture it.