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Greece Unlocks Subsidy for Formula One Track in Patras

Greek Ministry of Development unlocked a subsidy of 28.9 million euro for the contruction of a Formula One car racing track in Chalandritsa area of Patras in Western Greece. Total cost of the project is 94.6 million euro and is expected to create more than 500 jobs in a country that suffers from deep recession and high unemployment. In Chalandritsa exists already a circuit.

“Greece unblocked a subsidy of 28.9 million euros ($37.2 million) for the construction of an international-standard racetrack that can be used for staging Formula One car racing, the Ministry of Development said.

The track, which will be designed to host other events as well, including world championship motorbike racing and go-kart racing, will be built in Xalandritsa near the western port city of Patras at a total cost of 94.6 million euros, the Athens- based ministry said in an e-mailed statement late yesterday. Racetrack Patras SA, a private investment company, will oversee the project.” (Bloomberg)

According to radio sport-fm.gr, the funding is to be submitted to the Parliament for approval.
 “The track will be constructed on F1 race standards even though it will be difficult to host F1 Grand prix due to high costs. However, it will be designed ot host dozens of other races, training for F1 in during winter months due to excellent weather conditions.”

PS Approving a funding for Chalandritsa, does it mean that the project to construct a F1 race track in Piraeus/Drapetsona has been dropped ?. (yahoo.sports, autoweek). Or will Greece have two Formula One tracks? One for training and one for the real Grand Prix?

Local and international media had reported several times that Formula-One “pope” Ben Ecclestone had supported the idea of F1 race in Piraeus.

As my knowledge of F1-tracks is at minimal levels,  I’d appreciate some additional info though.

 
 

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9 comments

  1. I know nothing about F-1 economics but I can tell you what Niki Lauda, not an incompetent businessman himself, said about this planned race track when he was recently asked about it. He said it would be a waste of public resources.

    I would be very interested to know who stands behind the Racetrack Patras S.A. After all, they would be putting up around 70 MEUR. Is that their own money or is it the famous OPM? (other people’s money).

  2. a subsidy of 28.9 million euro

    I thought it was a PRIVATE investment? Why the h*** would the state cough up 1/3th of the amount?
    When I read this this morning all my fears about this scheme became reality…
    Please, let there be ONE journalist who will dig in this deal and find out what the links are between all the ‘players’ and expose them. Please, for once!

  3. keeptalkinggreece

    Klaus, in the local-media link it is said who stands behind . you ust google translate.
    the dela looks as if it is private investigation with the aid of public money (European Funds).

  4. Unbelievable. Whilst many Greeks cannot get essential medication or basic medical treatment because the pharmacists and doctors are not being paid, the government can find funds for speculative projects like this. I really hope this report is not true, do people not remember the Athens’s Olympic debacle.

  5. So. There is a country where seriously ill people are not receiving the medication they are entitled to, endangering their lives. But this country is spending some millions so that some cars can drive around fast in circles for entertainment. I would not be happy with such a government.

  6. keeptalkinggreece

    why the criticism? that’s investment and development: jobs and revenues 🙂

  7. I understand that 500 people have a chance to get jobs…… Truth be told, when I read this I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry….. I think that this borders on insanity. More than 50% unemployment, really… is this the best that the government can come up with…. I think I’m going to cry……

  8. It sounds like a very bad April fools joke alright. Decisions like this are proof that this government has lost every bit of common sense(If they had any to start with). I understand that this still needs to be approved by Parliament.Let’s hope the majority of members of Parliament still have some shred of credibility and common sense left…

  9. What is more interesting to me is that this will soon become a reality and there is nothing anyone can do about it. I’ve decided years ago that Greeks can do whatever the heck they want damn the consequences. Sure, a few protests maybe, sure a few angry people beating their chests, but in a few short years, there will be posh people having cocktails watching the F1 show in Patra……