MotoGP boss impressed as Silverstone revamp takes shape

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MotoGP boss Carmelo Ezpeleta said he was ‘hugely impressed’ having caught a first look at the multi-million pound revamp of the Silverstone circuit today.

Although the majority of the famous Northamptonshire circuit currently resembles a construction site, Ezpeleta was given a tour by Silverstone Managing Director Richard Phillips.

Silverstone will become the fastest and longest track on the 18-round MotoGP calendar and Ezpeleta got an opportunity to check out the new ‘Arena Complex’, which has been designed and developed with advice taken from the likes of Valentino Rossi and Casey Stoner.

Work that commenced in mid-November has already seen 180,000 tonnes of earth moved around the circuit, of which 50,000 tonnes has been used so far to elevate banks and improve spectator-viewing areas.

All of the earth is being reused, so nothing has been taken off-site.

Ezpeleta said: “This is the first time I have been at Silverstone to see the work they are doing for MotoGP and I have to say that I am really impressed.

“The last time I was in Silverstone was at the 1985 British Grand Prix and this has been a special day for me to return. Silverstone has been out of the motorcycle Grand Prix calendar but I think it is a good moment to return to this historic place.

“Right from the beginning when we started to speak with Richard about bringing MotoGP back to Silverstone, we shared the view of what a great event it could be.

“They were aware that it would be difficult to get the circuit homologated and that a lot of changes would need to be made, but they have been very enthusiastic and they have achieved all the goals and I must say once again I am very impressed with the work they have done.

“I am sure that the British Grand Prix this year on June 18, 19 and 20 will be a fantastic success.”

Phillips confirmed the new circuit is on course to be for March 22.

Ezpeleta was in the UK today to sign a deal with AirAsia, who will be title sponsors of the British MotoGP on June 20.

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt