Brandy Station - it's all over

THE Brandy Station racing circuit project in Virginia has flopped after two and half years of legal battles with preservationists who wanted the land left untouched because it marked the site of the 1863 Battle of Brandy Station - the largest cavalry battle in North American history.

The plan to build a world-class racing circuit at Brandy Station was revealed in September 1993, when a company called Benton Ventures applied to the local authorities for planning permission. A year of legal action ended with a federal judge ruling that Benton Ventures could buy the land necessary to build the planned 3.08-mile circuit, which was to have included a racing museum, an industrial estate for racing teams and a karting track. Plans for the track were inspected by FIA safety officials and work began in the autumn of 1994 to clear the land. The intention had been for the circuit to be ready for a race in 1996, but in February last year the federal government ruled that the work had to stop because Benton Ventures did not have the necessary permits to continue.

This resulted in a historical review of the site and renewed opposition from the preservationists. The constant delays meant that finally the investors in the project withdrew.

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