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Silverstone redevelops Stowe: new pictures

Mon, 16 Nov 2009 00:00:00 -0800

By Christopher Erasmus

First Official Pictures

16 November 2009 14:28

This is the new Stowe Complex at Silverstone, the first step in the racing circuit's new £7 million track development programme, and the main feature to attract corporate and product events to the track ahead of major planned events in 2010.

Will Silverstone's new Stowe Complex affect the 2010 Moto GP or possible return of the British grand prix?

No, the complex is a separate development within the full F1 circuit, and should be fully complete by March 2010, in time for the Moto GP in June 2010 and the still-possible British GP in July 2010. The development is designed to attract manufacturers and corporate events types to come and test at the Northamptonshire venue.

So it's just a money-spinning scheme by Silverstone? Or are they actually building something important?

The Stowe Complex is certainly a way for Silverstone to generate some important revenue and publicity. But it should add to the appeal of the historic race track with a raft of new facilities.

The focal point is a 1.15-mile track, configured one of six ways and designed to test modern tech such as ESP stability control. Nine new three-car pit garages will be built, with two given double height ceilings to accommodate the lights, audio equipment and rigging for presentations and vehicle unveilings.

Two irrigated steering pads – one for constant radius steering and another for split-surface braking – simulate conditions from wet tarmac to sheet ice, and there's also an off-road stage for rougher stuff. And providing the drinks and pies are two corporate hospitality buildings catering for up to 100 people.

Silverstone's new Stowe Complex is a clever bet – providing new revenues in a time of uncertainty for the track. It could plug an F1-sized gap in the finances come 2010.

By Christopher Erasmus