British Racing Drivers' Club to end deal to host F1 race after 2019; seeks to negotiate new agreement

Silverstone’s owner, the British Racing Drivers' Club, has triggered a break clause in its contract with Formula 1 bosses to host the British Grand Prix. Unless a new contractual agreement is agreed, the 2019 event will be the last at the Northamptonshire circuit.

The current deal was agreed between the BRDC and Bernie Ecclestone, who then controlled the F1 rights, in 2009. The deal included a 5% annual fee increase, so has risen from £11.5 million in 2010 to £16.2m this year. By 2026, the last year of the agreement, the fee would have risen to £25m.

According to BRDC chairman John Grant, the organisation has lost £7.6m hosting the race over the past two seasons. Grant wants to negotiate a new deal with Liberty Media, which has taken over the rights to F1 this season.

"This decision has been taken because it is not financially viable for us to deliver the British Grand Prix under the terms of our current contract," said Grant. "We sustained losses of £2.8m in 2015 and £4.8m in 2016, and we expect to lose a similar amount this year. We have reached the tipping point where we can no longer let our passion for the sport rule our heads. It would not only risk the very future of Silverstone and the BRDC, but also the British motorsport community that depends on us."

Liberty Media has stated its intention to retain classic races, such as the British, French and German grands prix, which have a long history with the sport and formed a crucial part of its formative years. The French Grand Prix is set to return to the calendar next year for the first time since 2008. It will be hosted at Paul Ricard.

The US company is pushing hard to improve the profile of F1. An F1 Live promotional event will be held in London's Trafalgar Square tomorrow (Wednesday), a plan initiated to build excitement in the run-up to this year's British Grand Prix on 16 July - and which will doubtless revive headlines about a London Grand Prix.

Silverstone hosted the first ever F1 championship grand prix in 1950. Only Monza in Italy and Monaco have hosted more races.

Read more

Robert Kubica: I have an 80-90% chance of returning to Formula 1

Azerbaijan Grand Prix: Ricciardo wins, Hamilton and Vettel clash

Max Verstappen: meeting Formula 1's most exciting young talent

Our Verdict

Mercedes-AMG A 45
The Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG features a 355bhp turbocharged engine

AMG pops its hatchback cherry in singular, inimitable fashion

Join the debate

Comments
13

6 July 2017
Perhaps the structure at Goodwood this year should have been a big pound sign.

6 July 2017
Remember when JaguarLandRover wanted to buy Silverstone only to be blocked by Porsche, Well this is the first of the repercussions. Next is watching the silverstone circuit becoming run down and then the land being used to build houses. I mean only in this country would they put the interests of a defrauding faceless company over the general public. Never have the Porsche owners looked like a bunch of retards.

6 July 2017
GODFATHER wrote:

Remember when JaguarLandRover wanted to buy Silverstone only to be blocked by Porsche, Well this is the first of the repercussions. Next is watching the silverstone circuit becoming run down and then the land being used to build houses. I mean only in this country would they put the interests of a defrauding faceless company over the general public. Never have the Porsche owners looked like a bunch of retards.

And a foreign company at that LMFAO

6 July 2017
GODFATHER wrote:

Remember when JaguarLandRover wanted to buy Silverstone only to be blocked by Porsche, Well this is the first of the repercussions. Next is watching the silverstone circuit becoming run down and then the land being used to build houses. I mean only in this country would they put the interests of a defrauding faceless company over the general public. Never have the Porsche owners looked like a bunch of retards.

And a foreign company at that LMFAO

6 July 2017
Sadly, Silverstone as a venue is utterly soul less. It is disappointing that the home of many of the F1 constructors may not be represented on the calendar, but if Silverstone is the best on offer then so be it. I attended in 2015 and felt less atmosphere than if I was watching on my phone at the nearby disused steelworks. I appreciate that a decent alternative would require government backing and some imaginative thinking in Whitehall, neither of which are likely. So, for this F1 fan, the sooner this charade comes to an end the better.

11 July 2017
F1 has become soulless and boring. This is probably just another tedious negotiating ploy. Build the houses for all I care. MotoGP and BSB is where its at and they don't need Silverstone.
Steam cars are due a revival.

11 July 2017
And the stands are usually full. Unlike some other circuits that are only in the calendar for the soul purpose of generating huge sums of money for whoever holds the 'rights'.

11 July 2017
Second nail in the coffin of Britain being a powerhouse in motorsport. Brexit was the first. But hey it's OK we get our sovereignty back. Guess it comes back to the old saying 100% of nothing is nothing.

11 July 2017
This has got about as much to do with Brexit as Monaco has with being a genuine race. IE, fk all.

11 July 2017
Silverstone, like so many other circuits, has been 'ruined' by the ever more 'needs' of F1. The vast run off areas, the daft new pits and the changes to the track shape. But, people seem to flock there to see very little if you are standing by the track. I hope Brands Hatch has no plans to alter to try for the GP. I wonder if the so-called London GP would ever get the go ahead, surely the mayor wouldn't want all that pollution ! I still think that Silverstone will have the GP in future.

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Ford GT
    First Drive
    26 September 2017
    Ford’s racing-derived GT copes amazingly well with most UK roads. Unspectacular engine, sheer size and left-hand drive status aside, it’s got massive motorsport charm and appeal
  • Hyundai i30N
    First Drive
    25 September 2017
    We get behind the wheel of Hyundai's first crack at a hot hatchback, and the i30N doesn't disappoint
  • Alpina B4 S
    First Drive
    25 September 2017
    Our first UK drive in Alpina’s more potent sports coupé emphasises the breadth of ability on offer from this Bavarian alternative
  • Genesis G70
    First Drive
    22 September 2017
    Based on the Kia Stinger, Genesis' new G70 saloon shows plenty of promising signs that it could be a hit in Europe
  • Lamborghini Aventador S
    First Drive
    22 September 2017
    Still visceral and dramatic as ever, but does the vast number of mechanical changes and tweaks help make the Lamborghini Aventador S more engaging?