A London street race could legitimately replace Silverstone's British Grand Prix

Emma Haslett
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A Grand Prix in London? It could happen... (Source: Santander/YouTube)

The news that after 70 years, Silverstone may stop hosting the British Grand Prix in 2019 sent Formula One fans into paroxysms of despair.

Silverstone is the only circuit in the UK licensed to run a Grand Prix - but today its owner, the British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC), triggered a break clause with Formula One owner Liberty Media, saying the event is costing it too much, after it made a net loss of £7.6m on the event over the past two years. That means the final British Grand Prix at Silverstone could be held in 2019.

Paddy Power has already got to work, providing odds on the most likely host for the event in 2020.

Although Silverstone is still the favourite, with odds of 1/7 because chances are the BRDC will renegotiate its contract with Liberty Media, a street race in London is second most likely, with odds of 8/1.

That's followed by Brands Hatch, with odds of 9/1, and Grand National racecourse Aintree, which is 16/1 to host the event.

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City race

A race around central London was put forward by Santander back in 2012, with a circuit which takes a scenic route around London's best-known landmarks, starting on The Mall, winding around St James's, hitting Piccadilly, turning down Constitution Hill and heading down Birdcage Walk before finishing on the Embankment.

In 2014 the government introduced new legislation giving councils powers to allow motor racing on public roads, although a race would still require an Act of Parliament to lift the 30mph speed limits enforced on roads in built-up areas.

Last year then-Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone signalled his enthusiasm about a Monaco-style race in London, telling ITV News:

If it can be done, then yes, we'd love to do it. Apart from [deciding who pays] I can't see any dramas.

Excited? Here's Santander's mockup...

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