F1 not in London GP talks as developer pushes another plan for track

2023 F1 season

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Formula 1 says it is not in discussions to hold a race in London, after a property developer put forward the latest proposal to bring the series to the city.

Urban planners LDN Collective and construction engineering consultancy Dar presented plans to develop a sports, leisure and entertainment complex in the Docklands area on the east side of London. The plan envisions the facility operating as a F1 circuit for two weeks of the year.

The proposal makes extensive reference to F1 and includes the FIA-run championship’s logos in its publicity artwork (above). However a spokesperson for F1 said it has not been sent a proposal and no discussions about such a race have taken place.

The developers touted plans for a track akin to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, which also runs alongside a body of water. The proposed layout measures 5.868km, includes 22 corners and has a projected lap time of 102 seconds. Floating grandstands would be used to allow a capacity of 95,000 spectators.

Britain’s round of the world championship is held at Silverstone, which has a contract to hold the race this year and in 2024. The Docklands proposal is the latest in a series of concepts for a London-based grand prix to emerge in recent years, but none have ever come close to being realised.

“With or without F1, these proposals are transformational and would be a huge boost to London and the UK globally,” said LDN Collective CEO Max Farrell.

The proposed race site already hosts Britain’s races in the Formula E world championship.

Docklands London Grand Prix track layout proposal, 2023

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Keith Collantine
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  • 21 comments on “F1 not in London GP talks as developer pushes another plan for track”

    1. Archibald Bumfluff
      14th March 2023, 12:34

      This is silly.

      There is nothing wrong with Silverstone, it’s brilliant.

      There are also other purpose built race tracks that would be suitable for F1 all over the UK if you really wanted a second race. (although some would need a little work)

      Why would you want to go to London anyway? Awful place

      1. @Archibald Bumfluff I agree with you on everything except for the last phrase.

        1. On what grounds? It is an awful place.

      2. I don’t think any of the other UK circuits could be brought up to FIA Grade One standard that easily. I suppose Brands Hatch would be the obvious candidate as it’s closest to London.

        There were some proposals floating about in the late 2000s to add an infield loop to Donington Park to make it F1-worthy, but fortunately they never built it. You only need to look at the soporific Snetterton 300 to see what might have happened.

        1. Gavin Campbell
          15th March 2023, 11:53

          The problem with Brands is they are already heavily limited from using the Grand Prix circuit because someone was allowed to build some houses near it. You’d also struggle with Stirlings and I don’t think they can move the barrier back that much.

          It was a Bernie tactic that it was a possibility rather than anything that was seriously looked at.

          The thing is Silverstone sells out, every ticket gone. Its was also the opening round of the first ever championship so it’d be tough to see what another circuit could bring.

          The other thing that these plans often fail to understand is the roads in London by international standards are incredibly narrow – the city was designed for horse and cart. Even that Docklands circuit it would be extremely narrow and constructing run off would be nire on impossible. While some of it is a major road (another problem in itself), the part near the water is almost like an access road and not suitible for F1 monsters.

          Your only real option for a London/UK City race is to utilise a park. Back to Crystal Palace anyone?

        2. Snetterton 300 “soporific.” Clearly you’ve never raced on it.

      3. some racing fan
        14th March 2023, 19:53

        Me too. London is one of the great cities in the world.

    2. I doubt this proposal will get any more concrete than the previous attempts.

    3. petebaldwin (@)
      14th March 2023, 13:15

      No thanks. Ignoring the fact that the track looks absolutely terrible (look at that nightmarish triple chicane thing at top left), I don’t have any interest in seeing another “city race” around a bunch of warehouses where they say “we know the track is terrible but we don’t have enough space to make a good track that is safe.”

      1. some racing fan
        14th March 2023, 19:59

        I know right? That triple chicane thing looks horrific. Truly horrible

    4. I rather keep silverstone. It’s a great race track with lots of history and it is very safe track. If F1 wants a second race in uk they should look for a circuit race track. For example Donnington.

    5. I’d be interested to know who they’re proposing this development idea to. (If it is a serious proposal, and not just an exploration exercise).
      A F1 track isn’t the first thing that comes to mind as an investment opportunity. Even if its is just part of a bigger project.

      Let’s face it, how many tracks on the calender expect to be profitable alone, and don’t rely on state funding and/or oil money to burn, or assistance from Liberty.
      And how many of those aren’t under constant threat of losing their place when Liberty sees the next potential goldmine.

    6. Should remain at Silverstone for the long term as it’s a great circuit thats popular with fans and drivers, Can produce good racing & offers a great challenge for car & driver.

      The problem with the trend of going to street circuits is that the street circuits are no longer really street circuits in the traditional sense so don’t feature any of the things that used to make street circuits such a fun & unique challenge with each circuit offering up very different challenges to the rest.

      Street circuits used to be narrow, bumpy, dusty with different road surfaces offering up different grip levels with not a lot of room for mistakes. Now they are tend to be quite wide, quite smooth & are all resurfaced regularly with a lot more room for mistakes so end up feeling not really that different to the permanent circuits so that unique challenge they used to offer has been lost.

      Even Monaco now isn’t the challenge it used to be as some of the trickier places have been opened up, Barriers moved back and with the regular resurfacing it’s lost the bumpy, low grip road surface that used to be part of the challenge. I still love watching the cars around there but you go back and watch footage from before 2003 and it’s a very different spectacle.

    7. “With or without F1″…it’s a bit pointless without it. Why not stick some yachts along the Wellington Straight at Silverstone. That’ll be almost as transformational.

    8. I’m no fan of Silverstone since the 2010 renovation (bring back Bridge!) but the UK is the last place that needs a “destination” race.

    9. Just when you thought no track layout could look more pathetic than Vegas!

    10. some racing fan
      14th March 2023, 19:55

      No. Quite honestly a London GP is a waste of time, everyone likes Silverstone, and there shouldn’t be more than 1 GP in England.

      1. Another proposal for a London GP, another proposal that will never see the light of day. At least there’s no Hyde Park / Buckingham Palace stuff this time

        1. Another proposal for a London GP,

          I think the big clue is in the final line:

          The proposed race site already hosts Britain’s races in the Formula E world championship.

          Mario cart isn’t pulling in enough money and they want a shot at the big bucks from F1.
          The existing event doesn’t project an inspiring venue and I rather doubt even F1 could make the venue more than a chase to and from a big exhibition shed.
          Transport in and out pretty much amounts to DLR and shanks pony

    11. Oh no… this is one of the worst messages for F1. Another sign Liberty is going to circusfy the sport. Racing is done on a track, a racing track. Just because you want more money it doesn’t make a street circuit the same as a race track. This might be off the table for now, but it’ll be back… soon.

    12. It was never going to happen. Disruption to the financial area and noise levels meant it was doomed from the start.
      Other factors – the airport couldn’t cope, the public transport would not impress and there are few top hotels nearby.
      At least it got canned before another Circuit of Wales type fiasco.

    Comments are closed.