Silverstone chief launches expletive-laden tirade on ‘criminal’ state of F1

Silverstone CircuitSilverstone Circuit
Silverstone Circuit
Silverstone chief Patrick Allen has attacked the ‘criminal’ state of F1, describing the sport as a ‘s*** product’.

The managing director took the job in January and helped deliver a sell-out British Grand Prix in July.

But during an interview with The Independent this week, Allen said the manner of victories for the likes of Lewis Hamilton is unlikely to attract new fans.

He said: “Fans don’t want to see a procession.

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“As a promoter, I can only promote what you give me and if that isn’t up to standard, people aren’t going to buy.

“Months and months back I said it to Mr E (F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone) himself that I can’t sell tickets for a s*** product.

“I think it is criminal when we have got to that state of racing and that is not saleable.”

Despite the record-breaking event in July when 300,000 fans filled Silverstone Circuit, the future of the British Grand Prix is in doubt.

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Track bosses recently admitted it is struggling to pay the £16 million hosting fee.

Silverstone has a contract to host it until 2026 but is suffering after losing rental income from selling a lease on 280 acres of land two years ago.

The circuit, which is currently paying its British Grand Prix hosting fee in arrears, has the option to terminate its existing contract early.

Allen was brought in along with sporting director Stuart Pringle in January after former managing director Richard Phillips, Ed Brookes and David Thompson were suspended in October.

Speaking shortly after his appointment, Allen said Silverstone has ‘great potential to become the ultimate entertainment venue’.