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MARCH 14, 2003

Bernie and the British GP

A few days ago Bernie Ecclestone was accusing the automobile manufacturers of destabilising F1 now he is being accused of the same thing with the British Grand Prix by Martin Brundle, the head of the British Racing Drivers' Club which owns the Silverstone circuit.

"It is clear for anyone to see that Bernie seems to have been trying hard to destabilise the British Grand Prix, Silverstone and the BRDC," Brundle told The Guardian.

The BRDC has a problem as Octagon, the owner of the rights to hold the British GP has said that it wants to pull out of the deal it has with Silverstone to run the race. Octagon leases the circuit from the BRDC but is now hoping to sell the lease to someone else. Ecclestone is the obvious buyer as he has already invested heavily in Silverstone as part of a deal with the BRDC and Octagon.

But Ecclestone clearly does not want to pay the rent demanded by the BRDC.

"If the British Grand Prix disappears from Britain, it will be because no one can afford Silverstone's rent," he said. "If no one wants to run the race then there won't be a British Grand Prix."