Brundle: BRDC alone can't save British GP

British Racing Drivers' Club chairman Martin Brundle believes that it alone cannot save the British Grand Prix after a high level meeting between the BRDC, Bernie Ecclestone's Formula One Management company and the Department of Trade and Industry failed to break the stalemate over the future of the Northamptonshire venue's big event

Brundle: BRDC alone can't save British GP

Ecclestone has told the BRDC that it needs to take out a substantial loan to fund a £40m upgrade to Silverstone in order for the circuit to remain on the Formula 1 calendar. But Brundle said at a BRDC press conference, held at the Institute of Directors on London's Pall Mall, that the BRDC is not prepared to risk bankruptcy in order to save the race.

"It is not within the power of the BRDC to fulfill the demands," said Brundle. "In terms of the extra funding, that is off the agenda."

Ecclestone has suggested to the BRDC that it could cut its rent demands to the race promoters Brands Hatch Circuits Ltd (formerly Octagon), which stand at £5million, over the period of time that it takes to run the British Grand Prix.

"It has been mentioned and clearly something has to give, but we're ready to do our part," said Brundle "Other people are going to have to yield if there's a general belief of saving the race. Everyone has to come to the table.

"It has been reported that our rent is £8million per year, when in fact it is a little over one half of that. As of this month our overdraft is £3.375million, mostly thanks to the wet grand prix of 2000. Our annual post-tax profit is £1.2million and for the year just gone it was £1.4million. With those numbers it is not possible to raise the £40-, £50- or £60-million with just our rent guaranteed [against it] until 2007. We have legal responsibilities to act in the company's best interests. To take on a loan that big could break the BRDC.

"It's just not within our power. People say there is an easy solution but it is not within the gift of the BRDC to save, lose or gift the British GP."

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