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Donington set to trial transport plans.

Donington Park chief executive Simon Gillett says the circuit will look to trial its plans for the 2010 British Grand Prix to be a public transport event at other race meetings during the 2009 season.

Donington will take over the hosting of the race next season in a ten-year deal, with planning permission granted by North West Leicestershire District Council late last week for the first phase of the circuit's multi-million pound redevelopment.

One concern raised when the deal to take F1 back to Donington was revealed back in July was how the venue would deal with the increased traffic that the race will generate, with Gillett then revealing ambitious plans to make the event the first public transport grand prix to counter the problem.

Those proposals will see fans using a combination of park and walk and park and ride schemes to make their way into the circuit, with Gillett saying that the plans would be trialled later this year.

“We will certainly look at it this year,” he said. “We have the MotoGP, which is a fantastic opportunity to trial elements of the plans. With things like the bike Grand Prix and World Superbikes, we will be trying out part of the plans to see how it works.

“We are working with the police and the highways agency, it isn't just us doing this. We are having a really co-ordinated approach and have had a number of meetings on it and are working through this planning with them.”

Gillett also said he didn't think that a plan for off-circuit planning would lead to a similar fiasco as that encountered at Silverstone in 2000, when heavy rain turned car parks into quagmires and caused widespread disruption.

“A lot of the off-circuit parking that we are using, for example Derby County Football Club which has capacity for 6,000 vehicles, is all tarmac,” he said. “We also have Toyota at Burnaston which has capacity for 3,000 vehicles on tarmac and DHL next door who don't run at weekends and have capacity for parking on a hard surface, so there are lots of hard-standing areas we can use.

“As we are coming out with our plans, more areas are becoming available. There will be some grass parking and people may get stuck [if it rains heavily]. I don't want it to happen, but I want them to not bring their cars and use the other options.”

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dean o

January 13, 2009 5:30 PM

why shudnt we take more than we can carry when i go motogp i take a van full of beer, food, caravan, perish the thought of buying food and drink at there prices least i wont be going next year no way on earth silverstone is awful

Tim Burr - Unregistered

January 14, 2009 10:28 AM

If I buy items from the various shops I do not want to have to carry these for the rest of the day and if you say don't buy anything why do all the various trade stalls go to race meetings particularly the GP?A great number of folks will also be travelling considerable distances and may be at the race for the whole weekend and so need their car to be handy even more.This has been an ill-thought out move probably more as a sop to the local residents than to the visitors.After many years of big bike meetings and rock concerts the new organisers should have thought of the traffic issue earlier,just as Silverstone had sorted this issue!!

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