The British Motorcycle Grand Prix will return to Donington Park after a six year absence after the Leicestershire venue was announced as the host of next season’s race. Donington had been the home of the British GP for 23 years before losing the race to Silverstone in 2010 but with the Circuit of Wales unable to host in 2015, MotoGP will return at least one more time.
The yet-to-be-built facility agreed a five year contract with Dorna last month but won’t be ready to host the British Grand Prix until 2016 and Chris Herring of the Circuit of Wales is delighted to have reached a short-term solution so quickly.
“After announcing the long-term MotoGP agreement between Dorna and the Circuit of Wales three weeks ago our priority has been to agree the venue for 2015. It is in the interests of everyone, especially the fans, to make a decision as soon as possible and in Donington Park we have a venue that shares our vision for growing MotoGP in the UK.”
Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has also welcomed the news and has no doubts that Donington Park will be fully ready to host MotoGP again next year.
“The Circuit of Wales has worked very quickly to secure the best deal for the British race fans and we believe Donington Park will deliver a fantastic race in 2015. Donington Park has a long history and has been the scene of some of the most exciting MotoGP races in recent years and we are sure that the extensive works undertaken since it reopened four years ago will guarantee a successful event.”
The news hasn’t been received as well at Silverstone with Managing Director Richard Phillips voicing his disappointment while also expressing his doubts over the viability of this strategy.
“We have invested heavily in the circuit and facilities here at Silverstone, specifically to host MotoGP, and have developed the British Grand Prix into a highly successful event. We wanted to keep MotoGP™ at Silverstone, but cannot afford to subsidise it. We are extremely disappointed not to be hosting the event in 2015.”
“Any future deal, with Dorna or The Circuit of Wales, had to make economic sense for all parties, including us. We know from experience what it takes to run a high quality British Grand Prix. We made what we considered to be the maximum sensible offer to retain the event at Silverstone, but it seems that The Circuit of Wales, who have no experience of running a Grand Prix, have concluded they can do better running it themselves, using Donington until their circuit is ready.
“Silverstone has taken the event to a whole new level over the last five years, so we hope this won’t turn out to be a backwards step for the British Grand Prix, teams and fans. The Circuit of Wales evidently believe they can make the finances work using Donington next year – we wish them the best of luck.”