Silverstone considering pulling out of hosting British Grand Prix after 2019
The British Grand Prix could fall off the Formula 1 calendar after 2019 despite holding a contract with the Silverstone circuit to host the race until 2026, as current organisers the BRDC (British Race Drivers' Club) are considering pulling out of the deal.
A letter written by BRDC chairman John Grant and distributed to all members of the club, says the possibility of 'pulling the plug' on the race must be considered as it fails to turn a profit and is damaging the future of the circuit.
Although the race is the most widely attended on the calendar – attracting 140,000 fans on race day alone – it doesn't make the circuit money as the cost of hosting it is so high, therefore those losses have to be covered by other events.
Grant says the threat of a "bad year" could do serious damage to the circuit's finances and therefore activating a break clause in the current deal might be the only way to secure its future.
"It is widely recognised that no European circuit makes money from running a Grand Prix," he wrote in the letter seen by ITV News. "We believe Silverstone does better than most, regularly attracting a large and enthusiastic crowd and putting on as good a show as we are allowed to do.
"Even in a good year, the BGP (British Grand Prix) does not generate enough cash to cover its share of the site overheads, our major concern has always been the risk of a bad year.
"The board is considering whether we should exercise the break clause in the BGP contract at the end of 2019. This is not a simple decision and we will consider fully the implications before coming to a conclusion by mid-year ."
Currently there are no other UK based circuits that could step in and take on the race should the BRDC go ahead with it's threat, which would leave the UK without an F1 race for the first time since the championship was formed in 1950.