Formula 1 race would ‘transform’ London

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It is a “hypothetical” idea, according to Jenson Button, but one Lewis Hamilton believes could transform London into “the ultimate sporting metropolis”.

McLaren stars Button and Hamilton, in collaboration with British Grand Prix sponsors Santander, last night unveiled a vision for the future with the London grand prix.

The 14-corner, 5.1km circuit would flash by a number of iconic landmarks around the capital, including Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and Trafalgar Square.

It has to be remembered the concept is nothing more than fantasy F1, with no official plans proposed or in the pipeline for the event.

It is merely a fanciful idea, portrayed via CGI technology at the Royal Automobile Club on Pall Mall tonight, with Button beating Hamilton 2-1 in a best-of-three one-lap challenge.

“Having been immersed in this project, having helped to shape this track, it feels as real to me as anywhere I’ve raced,” said Hamilton. “Jenson and I worked in the simulator to provide some useful feedback to inform the circuit design, so this is far more than whimsical thinking out loud.

“I have to say, this is an utterly epic track and would produce the most stunning and compelling Formula One race.

“A grand prix here (in London) would be the best thing in the world, the biggest event, sensational.

“If you add an event of this complexion to London’s staggering roster of world-class sporting events, it surely would have to own the title of the ultimate sporting metropolis.”

Appreciating the prospects of a race around the streets of the capital, Hamilton said: “How many people in London? How many would turn up to this grand prix if you had it in the summer?

“The turnout would be phenomenal. It would be millions.”