Atlas F1 News Service

Government to Investigate Silverstone GP Deal

Wednesday April 18th, 2001

The deal between the Brands Hatch and Silverstone circuits, aimed to keep the British Grand Prix at the Northamptonshire track for the next 15 years has been referred for investigation by a government committee.

Octagon Sports, owners of Brands Hatch, reached a deal to manage the Silverstone circuit for the next fifteen years, while in return, Octagon guaranteed the British Grand Prix would stay at the latter until the year 2016.

The Competitions Commission, however, has decided to investigate the deal after it was referred to the government, and Trade secretary Stephen Byers will be in charge of looking at the acquisition of Silverstone's management contract.

Byers said the Octagon deal "raises competition concerns in respect of the market for the provision of circuits for motor racing and related activities." Now organisers of the British Grand Prix, Octagon controls most of the racing circuits in Great Britain.

Byers added the Competition Commission would issue its findings by August 6.

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