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Silverstone 2010 - yes, no, who knows ?!?!?!

Discussion in 'F1' started by jknight, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. jknight

    jknight F1 Veteran

    Oct 30, 2004
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    Donnington lost it now the time has come and past for Silverstone but it appears now a game of he said/she said.....

    Carol

    f1 live

    The deadline issued by Bernie Ecclestone is likely to pass without a deal for a 2010 British Grand Prix in place.

    It was reported earlier this week that the F1 chief executive was giving Silverstone bosses a "day or two" to sign his contract before the British race is pulled from next year's calendar.

    The Times reports that the Northamptonshire track's management was "surprised" by the ultimatum, which is now set to end.

    "Their puzzlement is such because they say Silverstone is waiting for Ecclestone to respond to amendments to the contract, not the other way round," the London based newspaper reported.
     
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  3. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    I'm sure it is a yes for 2010.

    Bernie is just keeping them on their toes because he doesn't just want to offer them an easy ride for the next 5 years. Nor should he: Silverstone's infrastructure needs some serious improvements to make it into the 21st century.

    I've been to the UK GP in Silverstone and it was anything but Grand.
     
  4. 4rePhill

    4rePhill F1 Veteran

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    Wow!, bye bye Interlagos then as it's well known that their infrastructure is even worse than silverstones.
    (Bye the way, Siverstone has already made it into the 21st Century ;) )
     
  5. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    With so many other aspects of F1 withering I can't see Bernie letting the British GP die.
     
  6. Bas

    Bas Three Time F1 World Champ

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    It will stay on for 2010. Unless a new track is built it will stay on too (providing the infrastructure gets improved).
     
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  8. Jack-the-lad

    Jack-the-lad Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Bernie's deadlines are notoriously flexible, especially if they have an impact on his man-purse...

    Jack.
     
  9. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Interlagos was by far the worst GP I've ever been to. That said, they have improved their infrastructure significantly.

    Silverstone too has made improvements, but it is still a far cry away from what a modern GP track should offer its visitors.
     
  10. william

    william F1 World Champ
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    What Bernie Ecclestone wants is a Silverstone management to his liking to sign a contract.
    He doesn't care is the Club mortgages itself to death to pay for the fees.
    So far, he didn't get his way, and maybe that he is waiting for another 'coup' inside the BRDC to have one of his 'puppet' in charge, ready to sign on the dotted line.
     
  11. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    I'm on Bernie's side when it comes to Silverstone and the BRDC: Years ago when the pitiful infrastructure of Silverstone needed beefing up the BRDC instead used all its money on a clubhouse for its members. Great. Nott.

    Now Bernie wants to upgrade the grandstands (which currently are only grand in name) and the pit area. I'm all for that.

    If the Silverstone track wouldn't be in England, people wouldn't show up for that race as it is so inconvenient to race fans. A track from yesterday.
     
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  13. william

    william F1 World Champ
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    But that's the whole point: Silverstone is in England, and England is home to most of the F1 teams, the country that hosted the first F1 race, gave several World Champions, and also most of F1 fans if I look at the grandstands!!

    Hosting GP races on featureless tracks in countries that don't have GP tradition or even motorsport just brings empty tribunes and don't reward the fans!!

    Bernie is trying to disassociate F1 from its traditional berth and its fan base. Apart from lining his pockets, it doesn't make sense.

    Do you think that the NFL organisers in America would tranplant the whole show in the middle of Africa because if provides better favilities? I don't think so...
     
  14. SRT Mike

    SRT Mike Two Time F1 World Champ

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    I'm just curious... what do you feel a modern track should offer it's visitors?

    I've been to quite a few races, and I have to say, F1 races aren't any better than NASCAR, drag racing, or any other kinds of races in terms of what they offer.

    They have the "F1 Village" which IMO is a joke - it's also known as "the concession area" in any other sport... just a bunch of 18 wheelers in a square shape selling stuff. Then there are the numerous stands with vendors selling memorabilia and food.

    The stands at every track (which include several F1 tracks) aren't any better at an "F1 track" than any other.

    The only things I can think about in terms of facilities that some tracks lack that make a difference to fans are the big TV screens, and ease of getting to the track.

    But I don't think Bernie is talking about those things when he *****es about "modern standards".

    I'd personally take an outdated but interesting track over some modern snoozefest. Consider the racing at Interlagos vs the racing at Abu Dhabi... the latter is nice and new and has tackyness oozing from every pore, whereas the former just puts on a thrilling race.

    Am I wrong??? I'm not sure what I am missing on this one.
     
  15. Wolfgang5150

    Wolfgang5150 F1 Rookie

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    great, great post. This crap about infrastructure is such BS. Bernie acts like all of the fans nowdays are corporate ****** suite types, who expect to get into a race quickly without hassle etc
    Unfortunately because he has found suitable governments who are willing to leverage the farm to create Disneyworld with a track, he expects every track to do the same.
    When in reality, 90% of the fans want to be entertained on the track, not off....
    Kevin
    (part of the 90%, but also been exposed to the other 10%)
     
  16. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Not to defend Mr. E., but you leave out one group. The family members who come with the motor head. While you and I may be willing to put up with a lot for the sake of the on-track excitement the rest of the family may need more. If the experience isn't family friendly you're going to lose a lot of ticket sales.
     
  17. 4rePhill

    4rePhill F1 Veteran

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    +1. Have to say they could do alot more for people who go to the races with children.

    Maybe some free promotional stuff for kids, racing stickers,badges,posters etc on entry (I know I loved collecting that sort of stuff when I was young).

    A family area somewhere with previous seasons cars that kids can have their pictures taken in.

    A karting challenge where one of the drivers sets a lap time and the child who gets the closest wins a trophy and other goodies.

    A playstation area where the kids sit in a cockpit and race head to head with some of the teams third drivers in an F1 game.

    There are so many things they could do.
     
  18. bowbells

    bowbells Formula Junior

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    Most world driver champions? British.
     
  19. bowbells

    bowbells Formula Junior

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    The Ostereichring was always one of my favs. Middle of friggin NOWHERE! But that place took forever to get into, through the vast hordes of camping, drunken, F1 loving fans. We often stopped into the beer tents on the way back to the hotel, never bought a beer! The track was awesome, facilities dreadful, but it was always packed.
     
  20. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    #17 tifosi12, Nov 8, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2009
    I'm not advocating to transplant GPs to countries without racing tradition. All I'm saying is that Silverstone's infrastructure is outdated and needs a makeover. Britain is basically F1's home but its main track looks like it belongs into the 3rd world.

    I couldn't care less about any American sport. I never watch any of it.

    How many races have you attended in person and which ones are those?

    I don't consider myself a corporate ****** type (but thanks for putting that label on me) but a middle aged man who spends a great chunk of money and expects a minimum of creature comfort in return for that money. Things like a way to get to the race. A place to eat and a place dump what you just ate would make me feel more comfortable after spending 400 bucks on tickets. I get those things at places like Indianapolis or Barcelona but not at Silverstone.

    I'm NOT talking about VIP boxes and the like. While I experienced that once (as a corporate *****), I'm thinking here more of what Maslow's pyramid would consider the basic necessities.

    Here is what I consider basic infrastructure for fans (and again I'm not talking about VIP stands for corporate aholes):
    - a way to get to the track in about an hour (train, bus, taxi, car with parking, whatever)
    Silverstone checks that box only if you're willing to dish out an extra 500 bucks for helicopter transportation
    places like Indianapolis, Hungary, Monza, Barcelona all meet this requirement
    - a place where you can get food without standing in line for half an hour
    Silverstone is so jam packed with fans and has relatively few food places, that you end up in a long line, compare that to Indy where you can get food every 5 yards
    - a place to take a dump in a clean way
    Silverstone uses portalets, yuck
    most other tracks have permanently installed restrooms, which are kept clean and offer toilet paper and flowing water
    - grandstands that are multiple stories high
    Silverstone's stands are mostly flat and maybe one or two stories tall, which gives not much of a great view, particularly when catch fences are in the way, compare that to the 6 (?) stories tall Indianapolis stadium or Hockenheim
    - some sort of entertainment before the GP
    Hungary for instance has the GP2 series and the Porsche cup, Interlagos had nothing and I sat there 4 hours waiting for the GP on a grandstand with announcements only made in Portuguese, surrounded by Brazilians who didn't speak English

    So when you compare F1 with NASCAR tracks, you're not far off. I would take any NASCAR stadium as a standard for F1 racing, but sadly a place like Silverstone does not live up to it. There are others that are borderline too.

    Regarding Interlagos: You might not know this, but they put the track smack in the middle of slums. There are hundreds of poor people milling around the track. And by poor I mean really, really poor folks who wouldn't hesitate for a second to beat you over the head for whatever you have in your pocket. I was delivered by my personal chauffeur (whom I hired at the hotel, not a taxi off the street) to the gate of my grandstand. The gate was guarded by military personnel armed with automatic weapons. They let me through. After the race I made the mistake of exiting the stadium without keeping watch for my chauffeur. So I had to walk down one block of a street and some people were already approaching me. It felt like a scene from a zombie movie. Then my guy arrived, racing his cab next to me, opened the door, I jumped in and off we went.
    Granted that was now ten years ago and the infra of Interlagos looks a bit better, but it is still situated in the slums.
     
  21. ProCoach

    ProCoach F1 Veteran
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    Excellent post.
     
  22. Wolfgang5150

    Wolfgang5150 F1 Rookie

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    #19 Wolfgang5150, Nov 8, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 8, 2009
    For starters - when did I put the label corporate ****** on you personally? that was a general statement
    We're going down this road now? Damn; how many races; no idea; but I attended my first F1 race at the Glen in 1976 when I was 8 years old; have been going every year since (missed a few in the 80's; 90's); (I'm 41 now; so I can say I am very experienced at attending motorsports events)
    just like Mike said above; I've been to NASCAR, NHRA, CART/IRL, F1 races. I've had full paddock access (guest of Jordan at Montreal in 2001); been to corporate boxes for PGA events and the Super Bowl. I have not been to Silverstone or Interlagos; so it's not fair to comment on their facilities. But if I want to take my kids to Disney, I'll take them to Disney; if we're going to a race then we're getting our shoes muddy and we're eating hot dogs and having a great time...........
    kevin
     
  23. Wolfgang5150

    Wolfgang5150 F1 Rookie

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    yes; agreed. Good post....
     
  24. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Well there you have it: My comments were about supporting Bernie in forcing Silverstone to spend some real money on its infrastructure.

    I wasn't saying anything about moving the British GP to Swaziland nor was I talking about VIP stands for corporate aholes.

    Just give the British fans what they deserve: A Grand Prix worthy of its name with proper GRAND stands and some basic infrastructure for the common men and women.
     
  25. SRT Mike

    SRT Mike Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Ok, now I understand and I agree...the things you mentioned seem like quite cheap things to implement. At both Monza and Spa, they had vendors who had a bathroom-on-a-trailer. A little structure much like a camper trailer... I think it was 1 euro to use the bathroom and they kept it stocked with toilet paper and would go in every 5 minutes to clean off the floor and toilet seats. So it seems that this problem could be solved by outside companies who they let bring their portable fee-per-use toilets in. At Spa they were charging 1 euro also in the fixed building toilets too - but it was well worth it if you needed to go.

    Seems the problem of the food vendors could be solved too... why not let more in? Surely the track charges the vendors a fee to be there, if it were me I'd let as many in as I could. At Monza there were roads hundreds of yards long with vendors packed in every side.

    Seems that the entry/exit difficulties may require the government to step in an help with, no? I agree you need to be able to get in and out quickly. Silverstone is notoriously bad for this.

    On the pre-race entertainment, I see what you're saying but doesn't seem that this is a problem of the track itself, or is it? They did Porsche cup at both F1 races I saw, I thought they just traveled with F1 and did the same tracks? I never watched it... didn't care. I usually was getting to my seats 1/2 hour before the grid roll-off. With assigned seats i didn't bother to try to get there early or anything.
     
  26. kraftwerk

    kraftwerk Two Time F1 World Champ

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    Whether or not Silverstone is up to scratch is irrelevant, because Bernie is only interested in playing one track against the other, in his age ole business head, for more cash, and he needs it!!.

    The problem stems from the fact that Porno-Max see (sitting pretty with Millions) gave Bernie the rights to F1 for 100 years, then sold it to CVC for god knows how much = Bernie sat on a insane amount of enough cash to put the world troubles to right.

    Now Bernie IIRC pays 50% of F1 earnings to the CVC, the point is think how much cash could be ploughed back into the sport for circuits and teams, if this had not happened.

    Bernie is responsible for allowing 50% of the revenues to leave the sport, FAR TOO MUCH..now you can't knock the guy too much as it is him that has built F1 to what it is, however his greed and the fact he has created this huge debt to pay to the CVC, whilst him and Mosley sit pretty makes me real :mad: :mad: :mad:
     
  27. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    #24 tifosi12, Nov 8, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2009
    You are quite right, that except for the transportation issue, none of these things are very difficult to fix. That's why it is even more astounding and outrageous that some years ago the BRDC opted to build instead a fancy club house for its VIP members and ever since refused to pay for any more infrastructure requests made by Bernie.

    Prerace program is not an issue at Silverstone btw. But at Interlagos. Or at least it was ten years ago when I was there. I just brought that up since you mentioned Interlagos.

    The reason I bring up the question of how many races you (or any other poster on here supporting Silverstone as it is and bashing Bernie for trying to get its infra brought up to par) have attended is, because there is a huge difference in watching a GP on TV and actually experiencing it on site.

    Silverstone is a great race from a racing perspective and has a long standing tradition (being the first GP of the WDC series ever) and you do feel that you enter sacred ground when arriving there (after you spent some hours in a traffic jam no less). But it is a letdown as far its creature comfort goes. Particularly when compared to the great racing stadiums like Indianapolis, Hockenheim, Spa and Hungary (yes, Hungary, a great way to experience F1 in person).

    I'm surprised you think this is irrelevant, after all it is your country's GP. Don't you want to attend the race there in person?

    I know I won't be going there ever again after my dreadful experience. But you live there.

    Besides: Why Bernie does what he does, is another question altogether. But the fact that he is trying to get Silverstone up to par shouldn't be considered irrelevant.
     
  28. Wolfgang5150

    Wolfgang5150 F1 Rookie

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    andreas:
    just curious - what year did you attend Silverstone? I have to agree with both of you regarding restrooms....
    Kevin
     

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