MotoGP boss backs Ebbw Vale's Circuit of Wales

THE head of MotoGP is backing plans to bring a world-class racing complex to Ebbw Vale.

Carmelo Ezpeleta says he is excited about the proposed £250 million plans to build the UK’s first custom-built motor sport track in Rassau and hopes to bring a MotoGP Grand Prix to the site in 2015 if planners pass the scheme.

Such events attract around 70,000 people and typically boost the local economy by around £2.5 million per event, he said.

The Dorna Sport chief executive said the development, which would bring around 9,000 jobs would help regenerate the area as well as introduce motor sport to a young audience through the planned young riders academy.

He said: "It’s fantastic. I think this is a very, very important programme for MotoGP and for motorsport in general. It is good for the area and good for the people and the people behind it will have our help and whatever they need for the programme. We have been working with them and we will continue with that. We are more than happy with this programme."

Elite Superbike riders Chaz Davies and Leon Haslam have been using the experience they have gleaned racing all over the world to help architects develop the track to make it exciting for riders and fans.

Mr Davies, of Powys, said the facility would rival the likes of Silverstone and Donington Park Circuit, because it will be purpose built to the very best specifications, rather than being created from something which already exists.

Mr Haslam believes it will allow riders like himself, who normally train abroad a chance to train in the UK, and would help encourage a new generation to take up the sport.

Plans include a 3.5 mile main racetrack, an international kart track, an indoor dirt track, which could also be used for other sports like horse trials, as well as motorcross tracks.

The scheme also includes a technology park to develop equipment, a race academy for young elite riders and hotels.

Chris Herring of the Heads of the Valleys Development Company behind the plans said the project would make a lasting impact on Ebbw Vale and the surrounding South Wales area and said 90 per cent of the feedback they had received was positive.

A planning application is expected imminently.

Comments (4)

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3:27pm Wed 30 Jan 13

bikersteve says...

I really do hope this plan comes to fruition. What an attraction for the area and creating so many badly needed jobs. Can't wait...
I really do hope this plan comes to fruition. What an attraction for the area and creating so many badly needed jobs. Can't wait... bikersteve

9:04pm Wed 30 Jan 13

Mark Poulton says...

What a magnificent prospect this is.
Not only as a badly needed motor sport facility for South Wales, but a most welcome prospect for the automotive industry.
The very best of luck to all involved.
The addition of a speedway track would top it all off...PLEASE!!!
What a magnificent prospect this is. Not only as a badly needed motor sport facility for South Wales, but a most welcome prospect for the automotive industry. The very best of luck to all involved. The addition of a speedway track would top it all off...PLEASE!!! Mark Poulton

11:52am Thu 31 Jan 13

Philip83 says...

I appreciate that this would be great for the area in question and brilliant for the younger with the riding school. But, you have to ask why the bigger tracks in MotoGP are not on the calendar any more?

That is purely down to Dorna's greed! As you state each race brings about £2.5 million per event but then you have already paid Dorna more than that to be involved (or have to pay them a substantial cut).

This is one of the main reasons Estoril has gone from the calendar.
I appreciate that this would be great for the area in question and brilliant for the younger with the riding school. But, you have to ask why the bigger tracks in MotoGP are not on the calendar any more? That is purely down to Dorna's greed! As you state each race brings about £2.5 million per event but then you have already paid Dorna more than that to be involved (or have to pay them a substantial cut). This is one of the main reasons Estoril has gone from the calendar. Philip83

9:54pm Wed 6 Feb 13

RAY0011 says...

This would be fantastic for Wales but a quick search of the directors of the company raises many questions. The Heads of the Valley Development Company Ltd was created last year and has no trading history whatsoever. Their directors are associated to many other financial companies (mainly venture capitalists) who were also all created last year with no published accounts. Only one of the Directors of an associated company has any business which has traded for more than 12 months.

The majority of the businesses are based from a Coach House in Cambridge, hardly the type of set up one might think possible to raise hundreds of millions of pounds of investment.

Unfortunaltey there is no substance to these individuals or the businesses they have been involved in. Much more transparency needs to be provided in order to have an confidence in this brave project.

Good luck to these individuals if they can raise the capital but I have major concerns that mine and other tax payers money will be put at risk and gambled on a project run by individuals with only a veneer of credibilty.
This would be fantastic for Wales but a quick search of the directors of the company raises many questions. The Heads of the Valley Development Company Ltd was created last year and has no trading history whatsoever. Their directors are associated to many other financial companies (mainly venture capitalists) who were also all created last year with no published accounts. Only one of the Directors of an associated company has any business which has traded for more than 12 months. The majority of the businesses are based from a Coach House in Cambridge, hardly the type of set up one might think possible to raise hundreds of millions of pounds of investment. Unfortunaltey there is no substance to these individuals or the businesses they have been involved in. Much more transparency needs to be provided in order to have an confidence in this brave project. Good luck to these individuals if they can raise the capital but I have major concerns that mine and other tax payers money will be put at risk and gambled on a project run by individuals with only a veneer of credibilty. RAY0011

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