The annual report from the Australian Grand Prix Corporation has again revealed that this year’s event continued with the loss-making record of previous Grands Prix ‘Down Under’, and this year’s publication certainly doesn’t make for pretty reading.
In news that will have the non-motorsport enthusiasts baying for blood, it has been revealed that the 2010 event posted a record loss of AU$49.2 million (equivalent to US$46M or £30M), some $10 million worse than the 2009 event and more than double the losses from four years ago.
The AGPC has insisted that the global financial crisis had a “significant impact” on the event, which has been held annually at Albert Park since 1996.
A decade ago, the race posted a loss of (just) $4 million.
The Victorian state government has been quick to defend its record spending on the event, with opposition party members labelling the figures “embarrassing” and “outrageous”.
“The economic benefit to Victoria far outweighs the cost of staging the Grand Prix,” major events minister, Tim Holding, told The Age newspaper.
Taxpayers can logically expect continued losses for at least the next four years, with the Australian Grand Prix contracted to the Albert Park venue until 2015.
It certainly begs the question of how the Australian Grand Prix can post such massive losses when the likes of Belgium and Germany manage to post much smaller ones, or actually break even. Surely Bernie Ecclestone’s promotional fee can’t be the sole factor?
[Original image via The Cahier Archive]