City of Barcelona halves funding for Spanish GP

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The city of Barcelona has halved its funding for the Spanish Grand Prix ahead of the next running in May.

Formula 1 first ventured to the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya back in 1991, and has since remained at the track in Montmelo on the outskirts of the city.

The future of the race in Barcelona had been in some doubt amid speculation that the Spanish Grand Prix could move to Valencia, before a new contract was agreed between F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone and circuit officials earlier this year.

However, following a change in leadership of the city government, the state contribution to fund the Spanish Grand Prix has been halved from €4 million to €2 million ahead of the 2016 event.

Mayor Ada Colau had previously warned that if elected she would go ahead with a cut of the subsidy, which was confirmed to El Confidencial by her deputy, Gerardo Pisarello, on Wednesday.

“Formula 1 is not a priority,” Pisarello said, before going on to confirm that the state would not completely pull the plug on its funding for fear of negatively impacting the race.

Pisarello did however say that this decision was a step towards making the race “becoming self-sufficient, little by little”.

The 2016 Spanish Grand Prix is due to take place on May 15.