Silverstone to make 2010 British GP announcement on Monday

UPDATE A £300 million deal to secure the future of the British Grand Prix is to be announced today after Bernie Ecclestone agreed to forgo fees of a further £60 million, The London Times reports.

Officials from Silverstone together with Damon Hill, the president of the British Racing Drivers’ Club, which owns the circuit, plan to announce the details of a 17-year deal at a press conference in London Monday morning. After months of uncertainty and fears that the race would be cancelled, British Formula One fans will be delighted they can see their heroes — Jenson Button, the world champion, and Lewis Hamilton — do battle on home territory in 2010 and beyond.

Ecclestone said last night that he was happy with the deal, but he made no secret of his irritation at having had to spend so much time coming to terms with the Northamptonshire circuit with which he has had a long and tempestuous relationship.

“It’s been a long and tiring nonsense," he said. “They could have done this whole thing months and months ago."

The Times has established that Ecclestone, who repeatedly said he was prepared to cancel the race should Silverstone not meet his demands, has come a considerable way to ease the concerns of the circuit. The Formula One commercial rights-holder initially demanded a £12 million annual fee for the right to stage the race and on top of that a 7 per cent annual increase on that fee calculated on a compound basis. It was this escalator that was frightening Silverstone’s managers, who feared it would force into bankruptcy a business that made a profit of just £662,000 last year.

12/05/09 (GMM) A deal to stage a British grand prix at Silverstone next year appears finally to have been reached.

In the wake of the collapse of the planned Donington event, Silverstone chiefs and Bernie Ecclestone have been locked in long-winded talks, with the 9 December deadline of next Wednesday's F1 Commission meeting looming.

But amid new rumors that a deal has finally been reached, or is at least very close, the Northamptonshire venue announced that "the future of Silverstone and the British grand prix" will be discussed in a press conference at London's Grosvenor House Hotel on Monday.

With more talks reportedly scheduled to precede Monday's official announcement, present will be the president of the track-owning British Racing Drivers' Club, Damon Hill, and Silverstone managing director Richard Phillips.

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