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Buoyant Silverstone thrilled with crowds

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Silverstone has vowed to continue improving the British Grand Prix experience for fans on the back of last weekend’s event which attracted a 305,000-strong crowd over the three days.

This year’s British GP was the first under the circuit’s new long-term contract with Bernie Ecclestone – which

could stretch up to 17 years – with the weekend seeing Formula 1 cars race on the track’s revised 3.7-mile layout for the first time.

Silverstone says it attracted record-equalling attendances of 85,000 and 105,000 for Friday practice and Saturday qualifying respectively, while a near-capacity crowd of 115,00 turned up to see Red Bull’s Mark Webber sweep to victory on Sunday.

The Northamptonshire circuit’s managing director Richard Phillips was delighted with both the turnout and the general reaction to the event from drivers and fans, and has promised that there’s more to come when the second phase of the track’s redevelopment is completed in time for next year’s race.

“This time last year we didn’t have a Formula 1 contract; 12 months on and we’ve just enjoyed a fantastic British Grand Prix and a great race on the new circuit layout,” Phillips said.

“Early feedback from the fans has been very positive and the drivers have loved the new circuit layout that provided good overtaking opportunities. It’s been a fantastic three days and I have to pay tribute to the fans.

“We had more fans at Silverstone for practice on Friday than most circuits get on race day. They really are fantastic and we have to make sure we continue improving their experience. 

“This time next year we’ll have a new Pit and Paddock Complex, a new start/finish straight and further improvements to spectator facilities. It’s an exciting time for Silverstone.”

Silverstone also confirmed that 20,000 stayed on after the race to attend Grand Prix Party, where a host of F1 stars, including McLaren’s championship-challenging pair Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, along with race winner Webber, came on stage to entertain the crowds.ITV-F1

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