BRDC responds to by-pass story

Silverstone owner the British Racing Drivers' Club has dismissed reports about the government's role in pushing through the build of the circuit's new by-pass as "old news"

BRDC responds to by-pass story

British newspaper The Independent reported today (Friday) that Prime Minister Tony Blair and his former transport secretary Stepen Byers had approved an £8 million emergency pay-out to ensure that the by-pass would be usable for the British Grand Prix on July 7, despite advice from a senior civil servant that such a move would not offer justifiable value for money.

The BRDC has responded to the story by issuing a statement. It reads: "This morning's Independent article is old news. The fact that this was an accelerated programme was the subject of a press release by the Highways Agency.

"The decision to stand by government commitments to complete enough of the A43 in time for the smooth running of the British GP has been vindicated by events and has received widespread support from the industry, sporting enthusiasts, British and international media and from across the political spectrum.

"This is a good example...where the interests of trade and industry, transport and sport, and the greater interest of the country's prestige, all coincided. The government, in its totality, provided a coherent and focused response to a pressing need and the BRDC cannot be critical of that."

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