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Silverstone's F1 future in doubt after break clause activated

Sporting News logo Sporting News 12/07/2017
Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the 2016 British Grand Prix at Silverstone © Getty Images Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the 2016 British Grand Prix at Silverstone

The future of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone is in doubt after the venue's owners confirmed they have activated a break clause to terminate their contract with Formula One in 2019.

The British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) in 2009 agreed a 17-year deal with F1 to continue hosting the race at Silverstone, which has staged every British GP since 1987.

However, a built-in fee escalator has seen the cost of holding the event steadily rise, prompting BRDC to seek new terms with F1's new owners Liberty, which completed a takeover of the competition in January.

"We have reached tipping point," BRDC chairman John Grant said in a statement.

"We can no longer let our passion for the sport rule our heads. We sustained losses of £2.8m in 2015 and £4.8m in 2016, and we expect to lose a similar amount this year.

"Our hope is that an agreement can still be reached, so that we can ensure a sustainable and financially viable future for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone for many years to come."

Brands Hatch, Donnington and a London street circuit are possible alternatives to Silverstone.

The 2017 British GP takes place this weekend.

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