BRDC reshuffle topples Bellm

The British Grand Prix's place on the Formula 1 calendar will not be affected by a major management reshuffle of Silverstone's owners, the British Racing Drivers' Club, which has led to Ray Bellm being relinquished of his duties as club chairman

BRDC reshuffle topples Bellm

Autosport.com understands that Bellm was voted out of his position at a meeting of the BRDC on Tuesday following a dispute relating to the contract negotiations to seal Silverstone's five-year deal to host the British GP.

Sources close to the BRDC claim that internal factions within the club, led chiefly by BRDC president Jackie Stewart, were unhappy by the manner in which Bellm helped secure the lengthy contract for Silverstone.

The five-year contract to host the race that was agreed in December takes the deal beyond the crunch 2007 date when a new F1 Concorde Agreement is set to come into force, which could lead to better financial terms on offer for circuits.

Matters are understood to have come to a head this week and after a vote of the BRDC board about Bellm was forced to relinquish his position as chairman.

A BRDC insider told autosport.com: "It was just such a shame that they [Bellm and Stewart] felt they couldn't resolve their differences."

Bellm's departure could be viewed by some as putting fresh question marks over the long-term future of the British Grand Prix, but the reality is that it will have little affect - even though Stewart is known not to have the best of relationships with F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

One of the key factors in this is the likelihood that despite being voted off as chairman of the BRDC, Bellm may well choose to stay on the board of the club - ensuring that his vital input into the future redevelopment of the circuit can still be utilised.

Bellm was unavailable for comment.

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