Stewart fears for British GP

Stewart fears for British GP

Sir Jackie Stewart has voiced his fears that the British Grand Prix and other races on the Formula One calendar could be under threat after the axing of Spa-Francorchamps. The F1 Commission decided to remove Spa from next year's schedule due to...

Sir Jackie Stewart has voiced his fears that the British Grand Prix and other races on the Formula One calendar could be under threat after the axing of Spa-Francorchamps. The F1 Commission decided to remove Spa from next year's schedule due to new Belgian anti-tobacco legislation and Stewart thinks no circuit can guarantee its future in F1.

Jackie Stewart.
Photo by Brousseau Photo.
"Everyone is in love with Spa-Francorchamps, and particularly with Eau Rouge," he told Motorsport News. "But the bottom line is that it has had its grand prix taken away. For whatever reasons, they struggled to get their venue in order and if one of the most historical events can be taken away it is a warning for everyone else. If we still want an F1 race in Britain, we must fight for it."

Not everyone is in love with Spa; Ralf Schumacher recently said he would not miss the race but it certainly is one of the most popular venues on the calendar. It seems to make little sense, when F1 is struggling to regain falling audiences, to scrap one of the favourite circuits.

Silverstone has had a rough time in recent years and the threat of it being removed from the calendar is not a new one. From the mud-bath chaos of a couple of years ago, when the date was changed to April rather than the usual July, to continuous traffic problems, the future of the British GP has often had doubt cast upon it.

Stewart believes should the event be axed in coming years, the UK's motorsport industry would suffer: "It is not a given that we will have the British Grand Prix in the long term, so it is not a given that we will have a British motorsport industry," he said. "If the British GP goes, the industry will not survive as we know it."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Ralf Schumacher , Jackie Stewart