Prices rise as Silverstone cuts capacity by 30,000

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The Independent Online

The British Grand Prix is to become more expensive and more exclusive to attend. Increased ticket prices for Silverstone next year have been announced while there are plans to cut attendances by around 30,000 at a venue plagued by traffic problems.

The July race has been included on the provisional Formula One 2002 calendar, depending on the outcome of an inquiry into traffic problems this year. "The new structure will be introduced to accommodate a planned reduction in the crowd attendance of approximately 30,000," Octagon Motorsport, the race organiser, said in a statement that also detailed a new park and ride service.

The 2001 Grand Prix had a race-day capacity of 90,000 with some 250,000 admitted over the three-day period. Octagon said a three-day general admission ticket would be introduced at a price of £199 compared to the previous £190. A "seating upgrade" will add a further £100 to the price.

Octagon has promised free park-and-ride service facilities and announced that those buying tickets prior to 16 November will get them at existing 2001 prices.

"We have been given the opportunity to invest in the long-term future of British motorsport," said Rob Bain, the Octagon chief executive .

"We appreciate that price increases are never popular but we are developing Silverstone to re-launch the venue within the premier tier of the world's F1 circuits by 2004. Improving traffic arrangements is a part of the modernising process."

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