• European Grand Prix

Valencia not looking to dump European Grand Prix

ESPNF1 Staff
November 23, 2010 « Trulli hints that his Lotus drive is safe | »
Spectators enjoy the 2010 European Grand Prix © Sutton Images

An official spokesperson has played down reports that organisers of the European Grand Prix at Valencia are trying to offload the race contract to an alternate host.

The Catalan newspaper El Periodico claimed regional president Francisco Camps had determined that the city cannot afford the annual fee and organisation costs. At the grand prix in June, he reportedly asked Bernie Ecclestone if Valencia's contract - with four years left to run - can be broken, to which the F1 chief executive "flatly refused".

But Consell spokesperson Paula Sanchez de Leon insists that the Valencian government "has not initiated any change" in the policy about the F1 street race and it "will continue as before … this is not an issue that has been dealt with in the Consell."

The earlier report said the organisers are spending €30 million on the race annually, including an €18 million fee to Ecclestone's group and the cost of building and de-constructing the street circuit. Only €10 million is covered by the sale of tickets and attendances have fallen from a high of 112,000 in 2008 to 75,00 this season.