Birmingham Superprix deal set to bring motor racing back to city streets

Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, has confirmed that he's in advanced negotiations for a revival of the Birmingham Superprix as a Formula E event next summer.

Over the last 12 months, the Mayor and the Formula E organisers have been working on a deal to bring back street racing in Birmingham, similar to the Formula 3000 race held between 1986 and 1990.

The return of the race was a manifesto pledge made by the Mayor ahead of his election as Mayor last May. The intention is to showcase both the transformation of Birmingham city centre in recent years and the West Midlands’ excellence in electric vehicle design and manufacture.

The original Superprix ran in Birmingham from 1986 to 1990 before being cancelled. Mr Street says he is optimistic that the city will be confirmed as a Formula E electric racing venue in time for the 2019 season, becoming the only one of its kind in Britain.

The revival is thanks to new laws which came into force last year, allowing motor racing events to take place on closed public roads in England. The Motor Sports Association which governs motor sports in the UK and Auto Cycle Union which regulates motorcycle racing are authorised to issue permits for the races after consulting the council, police and other local bodies who must be fully satisfied that the event will be safe. Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said:

“These new laws make it so much easier to overcome some of the obstacles around putting on these events, provided of course we agree the necessary permissions locally. In my Renewal Plan I committed to making the West Midlands a global centre for electric and driverless vehicles, building on our existing strengths in advanced manufacturing.

“A revival of the Superprix – which is fondly remembered by West Midlanders – focused towards racing in new technologies will demonstrate our growing confidence as a region and become a tourism draw, bringing motorsports fans from all over the world."

Negotiations are being represented for Birmingham by both the city council and West Midlands Combined Authority, and the Formula E governing body are at an advanced stage - but both sides are optimistic a deal will be done very soon.


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