A little-known firm called Intelligent Transport Solutions Ltd has thrown its hat in the ring – among three other bidders – to tender for the access rights to London’s Olympic Stadium after next month’s 2012 Summer Games, with the aim of making the site suitable for the much-publicised London Grand Prix concept.
The group will join three football bidders vying for the exclusive rights to the venue, one of which is the West Ham United team, which had originally been awarded the rights to the venue.
If one looks at what the Russian Grand Prix organisers are doing by developing a circuit around the Sochi Winter Olympics venue, the London plan is to some extent logical.
Transportation of race fans to the area wouldn’t be a problem, because of all the purpose-built rail links to the site.
However, the access roads in and around the Olympic venue and the stadium itself are not suitable for for Grand Prix racing, and access into the stadium itself is limited by two ten-metre wide underground tunnels, which are far too narrow for a race track.
Equally, the space inside the stadium in which to design a portion of the circuit is too small to do anything significant – aside from a slow hairpin or chicane sequence – and this would hardly offer grandstand ticket holders the sort of vistas that they would be accustomed to at the majority of Grand Prix venues around the world.
While it might be relatively inexpensive to convert the stadium to be able to cope with this, there is still the ITS won’t hold the rights to the area outside the circuit, leaving the real question of who would actually pay for the annual cost of converting the surrounding area into a suitable Grand Prix venue each year.
While F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has been keen to trumpet the idea and even suggested putting his own money on the table to fund it, we don’t believe that this has legs for the many reasons which you can read in an earlier article we wrote recently.
Do you we will ever see a Grand Prix in London? Post your comments below…