Saturday, April 13, 2024


After Welsh government economy and infrastructure minister Ken Skates’ refusal to underwrite any element of Circuit of Wales project costs last week, its backer Heads of the Valleys Development Company (HOTVDC) began to implode.

A majority of HOTVDC’s board of directors promptly resigned in the wake of this announcement. Tim Murnane and Paul Woodbury quit on 28 June, followed by Seamus Kelly on 29 June. The only directors now remaining in place are HOTVDC supremo Michael Carrick and his wife Annabelle Lloyd Carrick.

Disintegration of HOTVDC senior management immediately brought into question its ability to honour contractual obligations relating to organisation of the UK MotoGP round at Silverstone on 25-27 August, of which it is the official promoter on a 10-year deal with MotoGP commercial rights holder Dorna.

Revelations have also emerged as to the scale of rewards Carrick and his wife expected to enjoy should the £433m Circuit of Wales project have come to fruition. These would have amounted to more than £5m in salaries and other remuneration, plus a £41m equity stake in the resultant operating business. Welsh government auditors are still investigating the fate of £9.35m in public money loaned to HOTVDC as seed capital

Consultants acting for the Welsh government had advised that they couldn’t find any evidence that rewards set out in the HOTVDC schedule were appropriate or reasonable in relation to the risks, time and services to which they relate. 


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