Donington granted race licence in time for BTCC round

Donington Park's return from the dead has been sealed by the granting of a new race licence that will allow it to host the BTCC next month.

Donington Park has been given the green light to host national and international motorsport events after it successfully regained its racing licence following the failed attempt to wrest the British Grand Prix from Silverstone left it physically scarred.

The Leicestershire circuit passed a safety inspection carried out by FIA and Motorsport Association representatives on Thursday [26 August], and will now be allowed to stage car racing alongside the two-wheeled action already assured by the recent granting of ACU licence. The latest news It means that Donington Park Racing, the company now operating the circuit, is free to host a full list of events for the remainder of the year, including the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race next month.

The granting of the licence marks a successful conclusion to an extensive £2m redevelopment programme carried out by Worcestershire-based Adroit Group, which began in May with the restoration of the track after construction work being carried out as part of a failed bid to bring F1 to Donington was halted. Contractors have also reshaped the track's famous Esses and lengthened the main straight at Goddards Corner.

Project director Duncan Green, a partner at construction consultants Pick Everard, led the team responsible for the redevelopment work and welcomed the inspectors' decision.

“We have worked closely with the MSA and FIA to ensure that we do everything we need to ensure that the track is up to standard, and I am delighted that they have granted us our racing licence," he noted, "It is excellent news for everybody connected with the circuit and is testament to a great deal of hard work that has delivered a compliant track within such a tight timescale.”

Kevin Wheatcroft, chairman of Donington Park Racing, shared Green's sentiments, admitting that the granting of a race licence will allow the company to press on with the next stage of the rescue.

“Reinstating the MSA and FIA track licence now allows us to develop and implement plans for the future of the circuit and for the Donington Park estate," he commented, "There is still a great deal of work ahead of us, but we already have a full line-up of races over the next few months. We have an exciting future.”

The first car racing event of 2010 coincides with the circuit's grand re-opening, with the Masters Historic Racing Festival over 3-5 September followed by the BTCC meeting on the weekend of 18-19 September.

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