Motorsport Vision, the company behind both the MCE British Superbike championship and owners of much of the UK’s leading circuits, including Brands Hatch, Oulton Park and Cadwell Park, have announced their aquisition of Donington Park.
The shock news leaves company boss and ex Formula One driver Jonathan Palmer in control of one of the UK’s most historic tracks – something that he says played a key role in the decision to buy it.
“Donington has incredible history, being the first permanent road circuit in the country and the only circuit upon which the mighty pre-war Auto Unions and Mercedes Grand Prix cars raced in the 1930s. Its modern day existence is purely down to the vision and energy of Tom Wheatcroft, whom I admired enormously. I can still remember the excitement of racing at the new Donington in my Marcos, the year it opened in 1977. However my Donington highlight was taking pole position and winning the FIA Formula 2 Championship round in 1983, and being presented with my trophy by Tom Wheatcroft on the podium. I was later privileged to be commentating for BBC TV when Ayrton Senna took his stunning F1 win at Donington in 1993.
“Like many circuits in the UK, Donington has had a turbulent time over the last ten years, though thankfully Kevin Wheatcroft and his team have now recovered the damage done by the previous owner of the business. Donington is a good British circuit that deserves further investment, energy and expertise in order to make it truly outstanding, and MSV will provide this. We plan a great new era for Donington, with some exciting new events and much enhanced quality of experience for all of its customers, whether spectators, competitors and track day participants, together with even better value.”
With MSV’s reputation for investment in their tracks, it bodes well for the Derbyshire track, which has had a turbulent time of late after a failed attempt to steal F1 away from Silverstone almost bankrupted the track.
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