British Racing Drivers' Club president Damon Hill believes the absence of Silverstone will be a loss to Formula 1 if the British Grand Prix does not return to the circuit in future.
The Northamptonshire airfield track will host the British GP for the final time this weekend, before the contact moves to Donington Park. Despite long-running issues with the new project, F1's commercial boss Bernie Ecclestone has said the race will not return to Silverstone even if Donington is unable to host the race.
Hill, who won the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 1994, says history is vital to Formula 1 and the loss of a venue that has hosted grands prix on and off since the World Championship began in 1950 – and every year since 1987 – will be detrimental to the sport.
"The British Grand Prix is a crucial part of the mix of F1, the history of F1," said Hill. "No doubt you can argue that no-one is indispensable, but the British Grand Prix is part of that, and likewise Silverstone.
"It's also part of something which is of immeasurable value to the championship, the history of the sport. Nostalgia is looking back wistfully, but it is also the key ingredient which makes something more valuable in the future because it has a history. Continuity of the sport is its value.
"I would never be against trying to export F1 or motorsport around the world. I think it's a terrific sport provided the economy can support it and people are able to enjoy it safely. It galvanizes people and it's great that it happens in other places. But it's not good to have an event where there isn't a packed crowd of people who are knowledgeable about sport - that's why football is so strong in this country."
Hill also stated his belief that the British Grand Prix could return to Silverstone in the future.
"It's very important to keep up to speed and to fight for your right to be there," he added. "Things change rapidly, and I don't think we're discounting the possibility that it could be back at some point."Related story:Full Q&A with Damon Hill