DC defends Silverstone

In the aftermath of the latest round of on/off posturing surrounding the future of the British Grand Prix, David Coulthard has questioned whether perhaps Silverstone should receive a similar kind of fiscal dispensation to that afforded Monte Carlo

DC defends Silverstone

The Monaco Grand Prix, run by the Automobile Club de Monaco, is understood not to pay the same kind of multi-million dollar fee to Bernie Ecclestone's Formula One Management (FOM) organisation than is levied upon other circuits. Monza, too, is said to pay less, with its historical importance to F1 cited as one of the reasons.

Coulthard, a man with an appreciation for the history of the sport and several BRDC Gold Stars to his name, said: "As to whether it (the Silverstone debacle) could have been avoided by what the BRDC has done, I don't know, but in terms of the brainpower and people with hands-on experience of F1, I can't imagine that they have got it wrong.

"Therefore, it would appear that it is purely a commercial thing. Taking an emotional view, which we all do, most of the people who eventually end up in F1 have come through Silverstone, whether it's foreign drivers in the junior formulae, engineers, journalists or fans. It has done as much for Formula 1 as any other circuit than I can imagine. So should it be given a little extra credit? I don't know. Monte Carlo is - it doesn't pay the same money as other circuits do."

Coulthard, like most of the British contingent, hopes that the situation can be resolved in time to see the British GP on the 2005 calendar.

"It's a regrettable situation and, as with so many of the things in F1, the dirty washing has been done in public. I hope it can be rectified. It's not the best drivers' circuit in the world but it is better by a long way than some of the modern tracks we have raced on recently, from a drivers' point of view. And I don't see which facilities are worse than what we are surrounded by here (in Sao Paulo)..."

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