Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of Dorna Sports, today received the Gold Medal of Sporting Merit in Madrid during a ceremony in which the Royal Order of Sporting Merits were handed out by HRH Infanta Elena of Spain.
The Royal Order of Sporting Merit is awarded in different categories with Gold, Silver and Bronze medals and plaques being presented to individuals or organisations in recognition of sporting success, or a contribution to the development of Spanish sport.
Also receiving an award at today's ceremony, which was organised by the Spanish Sports Council, was Julian Simon, who was given the Silver Medal in recognition of his 125cc World Championship title achieved last year.
Ezpeleta's professional career began in 1974 when he became director of the Calafat circuit. After four years in charge he moved to Madrid to direct the Jarama circuit and the sporting activities of the Royal Spanish Automobile Club (RACE).
During his 10 years in charge at Jarama he oversaw the organisation of four Formula 1 GPs and 10 MotoGP races at the circuit.
In 1988 Ezpeleta returned to Barcelona to become executive director of the Consortium for the construction of the Circuit de Catalunya, and also the Sporting Director of the Royal Automobile Club of Catalunya (RACC), organising events such as the Catalunya-Costa Brava Rally, the Baja Aragón and the initial stage of the Paris-Barcelona-Dakar event.
In 1991 Dorna Sports acquired the commercial rights of the MotoGP World Championship, and Ezpeleta joined the company in March of that year as director of the Motorsports Division.
In 1994 he was named Executive Director and in 1998 became CEO of Dorna Sports S.L.