Despite facing an uncertain future, Silverstone s latest accounts will give track owners something to smile about with the accounts showing a generous profit.
In 2006, Silverstone Circuits (who operate the track) made £13.6 million in gross profits and £1.3 million in earnings after tax. This compares to the previous year when they made a loss of £2.6 million.
This piece of financial news comes despite Bernie Ecclestone pushing for government funding for the British Grand Prix. Ecclestone has constantly pushed Silverstone for changes and has threatened that the track may be axed from the Formula One calendar if the facilities are not upgraded and a higher race-hosting fee is not paid. Silverstone is only guaranteed a place on the calendar up until next year, and they are facing increasing competition from the likes of India and South Korea. It is reported that some of these new countries are paying up to £20 million to host a race, whilst Silverstone pays around £8.5 million.
Many of the Formula 1 circuits struggle to break even when hosting a Grand Prix. Silverstone is breaking the moult because their latest accounts are actually for an 18 month period to the end of 2006, taking two races into consideration. Silverstone managed a turnover of £52.6 million and the circuit s current owners, the BRDC, have built up cash reserves of around £12 million.
With massive interest from the British public in Lewis Hamilton, there has been a huge surge in the demand for tickets to the British Grand Prix 2007 saw record numbers of spectators turning out on Friday and Saturday practice sessions, with Sunday s race fully sold out it is expected that Silverstone s next set of accounts could be even more impressive.