One of the biggest events in the motorcycling calendar is set to move to Wales.
A five-year agreement has been signed to host the British MotoGP at the Circuit of Wales – which is not yet built.
At present the proposed circuit is still a greenfield site and organisers have admitted that the circuit, facilities and infrastructure will not be ready in time for the 2015 championship. Consequently next year’s race will have to take place elsewhere in Britain.
The MotoGP has previously been held at Silverstone but Richard Phillips, managing director of the Northamptonshire motor racing circuit, said that the event was not sustainable at the fee level proposed by commercial rights holders Dorna.
However, with completion of the £315 million development in Wales some way off, the Heads of the Valleys Development Company, which is behind the Circuit of Wales, will probably need to negotiate with Silverstone or Donington Park to run the 2015 meeting, Motor Cycle News reported.
The Circuit of Wales in Ebbw Vale is designed to host international motor sport events such as MotoGP, World Superbikes, World Motocross and the World Touring Car Championship. In addition to the main circuit, the 830-acre site is planned to include a technology park for research, development and support services in the automotive sector; an international karting track, a 4×4 circuit and a Motocross track; and a motor sports race academy and training facility. The site will also include hotel and leisure facilities and retail and industrial space.
As part of the new agreement between Dorna and the Circuit of Wales there is an option for a further five-year extension.