Silverstone lead Formula One revolt as the sport’s new owners Liberty Media face rebellion from race promoters
- Formula One owners Liberty Media are facing a rebellion from race promoters
- Including Silverstone, promoters are angry at the handling of their contracts
- The whole framework of the sport’s calendar is up for grabs from next season
Formula One’s new owners are facing a rebellion that could destroy their hold over the sport in a landmark meeting at the Royal Automobile Club in central London on Tuesday.
Race promoters, including Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix, are furious with Liberty Media’s handling of their contracts and are ready to quit.
Silverstone, Monza, Barcelona, Hockenheim and Mexico City are all out of contract this year.
Silverstone organisers are leading a rebellion against Formula One’s owners Liberty Media
Promoters met for discussions at the National Gallery on Monday and are now prepared to tell Liberty — who took control from Bernie Ecclestone at the end of 2017 in a deal worth £6billion — that they are willing to concentrate on other series unless they are treated fairly.
Stuart Pringle, boss of Silverstone and chairman of the Formula One Promoters’ Association, told Sportsmail: ‘Everyone is disgruntled. Liberty’s ideas are disjointed.
‘We have all been compliant and quiet hitherto, but we have great concerns about the future health of the sport under the people who run it now.’
Liberty Media chief executive Chase Carey has been criticised for the owners’ disjointed ideas
One issue at the heart of the disagreement is the deal offered to Miami, a potential addition to the calendar. Liberty’s critics claim they are being offered a race for free, while Silverstone pay £25million.
‘Miami are seemingly getting a free deal,’ said Pringle. ‘That has not gone down well with anyone, not least with the guys at Austin, Texas, who are working hard to make their race pay. If this continues, Formula One will be racing on second-rate circuits, if any at all.’
Another promoter told Sportsmail on Monday night that F1’s bosses, chief executive Chase Carey and commercial head Sean Bratches, are like ‘the blind leading the partially sighted.’
The two of them, with former team boss Ross Brawn, have to renegotiate the Concorde Agreement — the commercial terms that bind the teams to the sport, beyond 2020 — but progress is alarmingly slow.
Silverstone boss Stuart Pringle, pictured in August, told Sportsmail promoters have concerns
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