As if revelations that it has breached both licensing and construction regulations were not enough [see separate story - click here], Donington Park has now been rocked by the announcement that one of its chief executives has resigned from his post.

It has been revealed today that Lee Gill has stepped down from his position of chief operation officer of Donington Ventures Leisure Ltd, the group which owns the operating rights to the Leicestershire circuit and which he co-founded with Donington Park chief executive Simon Gillett.

It was only two months ago that Donington negotiated a ten-year agreement with Formula 1 ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone to host the British Grand Prix from 2010 onwards, thereby taking the race away from its traditional home of Silverstone.

Planning application for the necessary ?100 million re-development work and improvements to bring both the track - which has not welcomed the top flight in some 15 years - and its facilities up to the required F1 standard was due to be submitted to North West Leicestershire District Council today (Friday), following which it is expected that four months of consultation will take place before a decision is made.

Gillett assured a meeting of the Donington Parish Council on Thursday that the circuit will be ready for F1 in 2010, insisting: "The reason I invested in the track was not to make it the best in the UK or Europe, but [the best] in the world."

F1SA quoted track spokesman Dave Fern as having underlined that Donington is 'now moving forward under the leadership of Simon Gillett' and that 'the departure of Mr Gill will have no impact on the grand prix'.