Stewart: GP loss would be 'irresponsible'

Three-time world champion Jackie Stewart insists that it would be "irresponsible" of the UK government not to help safeguard the future of the British Grand Prix

Stewart: GP loss would be 'irresponsible'

Stewart, who preceded Damon Hill as president of the British Racing Drivers' Club, believes that politicians must be willing to play a larger role in ensuring the future of the race.

"We were the first to hold a world championship grand prix in 1950 and we've never missed it since," Stewart told the BBC's grand prix coverage. "To lose that now would be irresponsible for the sport itself, maybe for the commercial rights holder and for the British government.

"They have supported many other sports far and beyond anything that they have ever given to motor-racing. It's no good any MP telling me that motor-racing is a rich sport and that the government could not be seen to be rescuing it. That is wrong.

"It is a very successful industrial sport that brings jobs to our country and prestige to us on a global basis. We must make it stay in Britain and our politicians should be playing a bigger role in that."

Stewart echoed Bernie Ecclestone's suggestion that the government should be willing to invest a tiny fraction of the costs needed to run the 2012 London Olympics to save the British Grand Prix. The Scot has long advocated such a course of action.

"I have been saying that for a great many years," he told the BBC. "Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone disagreed with me. They did not think that we should be asking for government money and were quite vocal in that criticism of me.

"I'm glad they've changed their minds because both of them have said the government money should be supplied.

"When you see what has been done for the Olympics and the amount of money for some stadiums that maybe will only be used for that and then broken down, it would be stupid of the government [not to help the British Grand Prix].

"We have got an industry that is dependent on motorsport. Nearly 50,000 jobs in the UK would be at risk. That has got to be kept alive for UK PLC to keep the British GP in this country."

Stewart also supported Silverstone's suitability to take over should Donington Park not be able to host the race in the wake of fresh concerns over the viability of holding the British Grand Prix at the 1993 European GP venue.

"If Donington were unable to hold the British Grand Prix for financial or other reasons, then the natural suggest would be that Silverstone would be the perfect place for it to run," said Stewart.

"I hope they could relight the fires at Silverstone to at least hold it in 2010 and then try to get the government and other people involved to create facilities that would be acceptable to Bernie Ecclestone and the commercial rights holders that he represents, as well as the FIA."

shares
comments
Rosberg back on top in second practice
Previous article

Rosberg back on top in second practice

Next article

Government not willing to pay for GP

Government not willing to pay for GP
Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Plus

Singapore Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

A testing return to the Singapore Grand Prix in tricky conditions created plenty of hazards and mistakes for the Formula 1 drivers to fall into. That partly explains a number of low scores, including from a handful of high profile runners, allowing others to take a starring role under the floodlights

The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP Plus

The two key contributors to Leclerc's defeat to Perez in F1's 2022 Singapore GP

In a marathon Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix, Sergio Perez’s victory was only assured hours after the race due to a stewards investigation. Throughout the contest the Red Bull driver impressively held off Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in changing conditions to see the Mexican pull out enough of an advantage to negate his post-race penalty

Formula 1
Oct 3, 2022
The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams Plus

The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams

What happens, asks MATT KEW, if the old adage of win on a Sunday, sell on a Monday is no longer true for F1 manufacturers?

Formula 1
Oct 2, 2022
Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie? Plus

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie?

The Australian rising star is fast, consistent, confident, adaptable and has shown excellent racecraft, but there’s already a taint to his reputation. That hasn’t stopped him becoming the hottest property in this year’s F1 driver market and why McLaren moved fast to snap up the 21-year-old

Formula 1
Sep 30, 2022
The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022
Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Plus

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022