Silverstone unveils new £27m pits and paddock Wing

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Silverstone unveiled its state-of-the-art £27m new pits and paddock Wing yesterday (Tuesday) The Silverstone Wing helps make facilities at the Northamptonshire circuit the envy of the world and the opening ceremony was performed by His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent, KG in front of a star-studded guest list that included Sir Stirling Moss, John Surtees OBE, Nigel Mansell OBE and nine-times MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi.

More than 800 guests attended the ceremony Richard Phillips, Managing Director of Silverstone Circuits Limited, said: “Building on last year’s successful Grand Prix track upgrade, The Wing is another great milestone in Silverstone’s history and we must recognise and thank the BRDC for having the insight and vision to invest in to the future of the venue as we continue to expand and diversify the business.

"This building will not only be a wonderful base for our major race meetings, but has the flexibility to accommodate conferences, exhibitions, launches, banqueting functions and experiential events. Silverstone is now one of the best motor sport facilities in the world; and British motor sport has an iconic home that we can all be proud of."

Rossi, who missed last year's MotoGP race having suffered a broken right leg during practice for his home in Mugello in the build-up to the Silverstone round, said: "I am very excited because last year I was at home injured and I had to watch the race at home on the television and for sure it is not the same, so I decided to come here and see the track because all of the riders have said to me it is very good and fast but you have to understand which way the track goes and I can’t wait for the Grand Prix. It is a great track, very technical and fast and in the past a lot of battles with motorcycles with Barry Sheene and Kenny Roberts."

Silverstone Wing facts and figures

The Silverstone Wing measures 390 metres in length The build programme, from start to finish, will be 54 weeks (end of April 2010, to Spring of 2011) Up to 110 personnel work on site at any one time Total man hours in the construction phase of the project expected to reach 260,000 The height of the ‘blade’ measures 30 metres.

The roof area spans 9,700 square metres  1,200 tonnes of steel has been erected in and around the building Approximate floor space for ‘functional areas’: 41 garages covering 6,200 square metres; Media Centre covers 2,780 square metres; Spectator and hospitality zones cover 8,200 square metres; Race Control covers 950 square metres

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt