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SBD/November 2, 2011/Facilities
Permits Issued Last Week Allow Construction Of Circuit Of The Americas To Begin
Published November 2, 2011
UPSET INVESTORS: In London, Tom Cary reports investors who were involved in the bidding process to develop Silverstone race track “are unhappy at the way in which the Alpha Group … leapt to the front of the queue in the summer” to purchase the facility. There is “particular concern over an alleged non-refundable payment of [US$1.6M] to the British Racing Drivers’ Club, Silverstone’s owners, as a ‘gesture of goodwill’ to secure and facilitate the position of exclusivity and preferred bidder status for the 150-year lease.” It is understood that four bids “had been shortlisted by the BRDC following the start of the bidding process some 15 months ago.” However, in August “a letter was sent … stating that a fifth party had been identified and granted preferred bidder status.” Sources said that “a non-refundable deposit of [US$1.6M] was paid by the Alpha Group ‘as a gesture of goodwill’ to secure this privilege.” Cary notes a “deal is expected to be announced shortly” (London TELEGRAPH, 11/2).