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Circuit of Wales secures Aviva backing, delays MotoGP until 2018

Silverstone is expected to host the next two British rounds of MotoGP with the Circuit of Wales project aiming to hold its first event in 2018 with Aviva backing.
Silverstone is expected to host the next two British rounds of MotoGP with the Circuit of Wales project aiming to hold its first event in 2018, with insurance giants Aviva to be named as financial backers.

Last November, the Welsh government gave the final approval to de-register common land in Ebbw Vale and construction work is set to begin once financial contracts have been finalised. New Circuit of Wales chief executive Martin Whitaker says an announcement will be made 'very, very soon' and it is believed insurers Aviva are weighing in with significant financial support, according to BBC Wales.

It is also believed Silverstone will host the British round of MotoGP in 2016 and 2017 with Circuit of Wales staff running the event, similar to last year's British MotoGP when Valentino Rossi claimed victory at a soaking wet Silverstone.

The Circuit of Wales venture secured a five-year deal with Dorna which began last year and had originally hoped to move the event to Ebbw Vale in 2017 but after interruptions in confirming financial backing MotoGP could be delayed by 12 months, with the Welsh circuit taking over hosting duties in 2018.

“I have no problem in the fact that we have the money,” Whitaker said. “We are in advance stages of negotiations and hopefully very, very soon we will be able to make an announcement and obviously then get on with the ground breaking which is the crucial point.

“There are phases in the project but the crucial phases are the ones we have all the finances for. The track is our primary focus at this moment in time.”

Whitaker, former Ford chief and Bahrain International Circuit CEO, was announced as the new head of Circuit of Wales project at the same juncture planning permission was granted and the required financial support was in place to satisfy the Heads of the Valleys Development Company to give it the green light.

The Circuit of Wales project is aiming to create up to 6,000 new jobs at the track, two hotels and an industrial site and is also set to receive approximately £30m worth of loans from the Welsh government.

Aviva, whose amount of financial backing hasn't been disclosed, is the largest insurance group in the UK with 31 million customers worldwide.

Responding to Crash.net, a circuit spokesperson says the full financial backers will be announced along with a construction timetable in the coming weeks.

"The Circuit of Wales is currently in the closing stages of the due diligence process with the financial investors who will be supporting this development," a statement from Circuit of Wales Read. "In line with the exclusive nature of these agreements, Circuit of Wales will not be commenting on the potential identity of the financial institutions involved. Once these have been completed, the supporters of the project will be publicly announced and detailed construction timelines revealed."



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Tetley

February 09, 2016 11:47 AM

"...construction work is set to begin once financial contracts have been finalised..." Or to put it another way, all the money spent so far on site has had zero financial return for the existing investors, and now they are looking for more mugs to lose more money. Maybe the real mugs are Dorna- I'd like to know it Dorna have received any payment for their 5-year contract, or if Dorna have had to put money INTO the project. Face facts - the CoW will never be finished, or maybe even started. The Planning Authorities have been fooled into de-restricting the site so when the CoW is abandoned the Conmen will make the land into an industrial site, which is what their intention was in the first place. On the bright side, the Industrial site will probably create more actual jobs than the unachievable 6,000 claimed for CoW.



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