Investor could iron out Silverstone's issues

© Ubaid Parkar, 13 July 2012
© AP Photo/Tom Hevezi

Silverstone's managing director Richard Phillips will continue to hold his position and hopes to find an investor to help the circuit cope with potential debacles in the future.

During the British Grand Prix weekend, the organisers faced several problems due to incessant rain forcing them to issue a directive requesting spectators not to attend the sessions on Saturday after the car parks and campsites flooded.

More than 25,000 fans were told to return home as the organisers expected conditions to worsen following Friday’s problems, which saw a tailback of five miles along the main road leading to the track by lunchtime.

"On Friday night I was pretty emotional and I take it personally, I take it seriously," Phillips was quoted saying by AFP. “I did think 'should I be in charge? Is it sustainable?' But I have always wanted to see it through.”

Even Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone did not anticipate the exacerbated scenario and defended the organisers.

"I'm really, really upset for the fans, but in reality if it was you running the race what would you do? For the people of Silverstone, what could they have done? They probably couldn't predict the rain," Ecclestone reasoned.

"Honestly I don't think anyone expected the amount of rain we had,” the 81-year-old pointed out. "You might as well say why didn't the councils in all these different places throughout England do something?

"I looked on the TV and saw the places flooded, the houses flooded, shops flooded, people abandoning cars. I didn't expect to see that either," he added.

Phillips now wants to ensure that the British Grand Prix is prepared for such difficulties in the future but admitted that the circuit needed an investor to cover it.

"We are a private Grand Prix, a private circuit and we have to do a lot out of our own pocket," Phillips was quoted saying by Reuters. “But we have to get the right one.

"The interest is there, these are very expensive places to run and having someone come in with some extra cash would be fantastic. It would enable us to do better things," he explained.

The turnout and the enthusiasm of the fans however left the F1 fraternity impressed.

"It was great to see so many people, in fact all weekend...with this kind of weather," Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali said.

"We (Italians) for sure would have stayed in bed or in front of the television," he quipped.


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