Published: Wed, July 12, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Future of British Grand Prix in doubt after Silverstone activates break clause

The British Racing Drivers" Club made a decision to trigger a break clause that releases them from hosting the race beyond 2019 because the cost is "potentially ruinous'. Indeed, the very first official F1 race took place at the circuit way back in 1950, and while it shared British GP duties with Brands Hatch and Aintree over the years, Silverstone became F1's permanent United Kingdom home 30 years ago.

Pringle insisted that the decision to break the contract was not taken lightly, and although they are hopeful of negotiating a new, more financially viable contact, they know the risk is now there that the British Grand Prix could fall off the Formula 1 calendar.

"We sustained losses of £2.8 million (Dh13.23m) in 2015 and £4.8m in 2016, and we expect to lose a similar amount this year".

The owner of Silverstone said today it has activated a break clause in its contract with the owners of Formula One, meaning the racing circuit will no longer host the UK's landmark motor sport event.

The British Grand Prix could become a street race in the Docklands and Canary Wharf, according to a report in The Times, with the chairman and chief executive of Formula One, Chase Carey, expressing his desire for more street races, including London.

Tuesday's development means the 2019 race will be the last at Silverstone unless a new deal can be reached.

Liberty Media has told Silverstone that there would be no room for renegotiating terms, imposed in 2009 under the uncompromising leadership of Bernie Ecclestone.

The F1 ownership said it is focused on preserving the race.

"Losing the British Grand Prix would have a negative impact that is felt far beyond Formula 1 and Silverstone".

Grant said the BRDC remained fully supportive of the changes Liberty are bringing to the sport but the non-profit members club could "no longer let our passion for the sport rule our heads". This is a circuit that has hosted F1 races since the F1 series began in the 50s, alternating initially with Aintree, then Brands Hatch, before taking over full hosting duties from 1987.

"The week leading up to the British Grand Prix, should be a week of great celebration for F1 and Silverstone", the spokesman said.

But, the activation of the clause does not necessarily mean this is the beginning of the end for Silverstone. Put simply, we've run out of road and have been left with no option but to trigger the break clause.

With over 300,000 such people turning up to Silverstone for last year's British GP race weekend, that is a lot of fans to ensure their home race is not lost.

Like this: