Donington Park could yet host the 2010 British Grand Prix, urges Simon Gillett – despite the fact that his company Donington Ventures Leisure Ltd (DVLL) recently went into administration and rival venue Silverstone has revealed that a deal is now all-but done.
After failing to raise the necessary £135 million funding required to bring Donington and its outdated facilities up to F1 standard, Gillett saw the 17-year contract that Formula One Management (FOM) chief executive Bernie Ecclestone had offered him withdrawn and instead presented to Silverstone, with fears that there might be no British Grand Prix in 2010 at all.
Whilst Ecclestone has imposed a final 9 December deadline on Silverstone's owners the British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) to agree terms to stage the blue riband
event on the annual UK motorsport calendar, negotiations between the two parties remain ongoing – though the Northants circuit's managing director Richard Phillips has stated that a rapprochement
is now closer than ever [see separate story – click here
Still, however, the beleaguered Gillett seems unwilling to concede defeat in his audacious bid – as he contends that Donington is not out of the running by a long stretch.
“As far as I see it there are two tracks competing,” he told British newspaper The Guardian
, “so in my mind that makes it 50-50. As Bernie said last week, if someone comes in now and invests in Donington the chance is still there. The administrators are working hard, and if we had the money we would have the 17-year agreement.
“There are half a dozen people interested at the moment, from different backgrounds, with different ideas and intentions. From a location point-of-view and a fans' point-of-view, everything about Donington makes it a viable circuit.”