COTA late with payment

It’s still a difficult situation for the Circuit of the Americas in that the state of Texas announced it would no longer be sending the amount previously agreed to due to a new calculation formula and now it seems that COTA have yet to pay for the USGP recently held in October.

Formula One Management (FOM) had allowed the circuit to pay late but as of a report in the Statesman, the payment still hasn’t been paid. It appears that the state has yet to pay out its reduced amount from the Major Events Trust Fund (METF) but even so, COTA boss Bobby Epstein still thinks it will be difficult to swing.

FOM boss Bernie Ecclestone acknowledged the change in funding and said:

“The person who dealt with this in the first place is no longer there. The governor is no longer there. So they have got new people, but they should pay what was agreed,” Ecclestone said. “I think we will get the funding back on track again.”

He too is under the impression the state should honor what was agreed upon and after this year’s miserable weather impacted the revenue the circuit gained, the additional $5 million is desperately needed.

Ecclestone agreed that COTA could play late due to the state’s tardiness with their portion which is referred to in the article as being approximately $33 million. After a year like 2015, that’s a big number and looks to get larger with a 10% escalator per year.

It’s a tough situation and I know there are two camps involved, the Tavo camp and the Epstein camp. I don’t have a knife in that fight but I do like the circuit and as the only track capable of holding an F1 race today, it seems silly to continue this war of words to the detriment of our own enjoyment.

An escalating yearly fee and a reduction in METF dollars and 103,000 people on race day is not the most likely way to make the track economics work. Let’s hope other events can keep the USGP going.

Hat Tip: the Statesman

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Paul KieferJr

Dear Bernie: We took a bloodbath what with that hurricane coming through. So, the payment’s going to be a bit late. Signed, “Circuit of the Americas”.

charlie white

Dear Circuit of the Americas: Pay up ASAP or we’re going to California(cue up Led Zeppelin) or that desirable central Asian paradise Azerbaijan. With limited patience, signed Bernie.

Mike W

That’s why Bernie prefers dealing with Putin. He is guaranteed to get his money from the country that juiced up all their athletes.

The Captain

So what is this, the 3rd story in two days about the lack of money for someone in F1? I’m gonna leave aside the contracts, promises, political infighting, and partisan squabbles and just say once again that the giant purple haired drunken elephant in the room here is that an F1 race is not profitable for anyone other than Bernie and CVC. Should Texas pay up what was promised? Yes, no, doesn’t’ matter. All that matters now is we need to ask why there seems to always have be some some sort of state or rich private entity that must… Read more »

John The Race Fan

If Bernie were to take on the Texas government, it would be highly entertaining.
Not necessarily GOOD, mind you.