A Russian billionaire now owns 99% of the fabled Formula One racing circuit the Nurburgring.

In late 2014, it was reported that Viktor Kharitonin, who co-founded the pharmaceutical company Pharmstandard, had bought into the embattled German Grand Prix venue. Forbes Russia now reports that Kharitonin, 43, has upped his stake from 80 to 99 percent.

“Today we have closed the deal,” he is quoted as saying, with Forbes claiming the value of the new transaction is some €38 million (£30 million).

It is believed Kharitonin has paid €77 million (£60 million) in total for the circuit, with the minority shareholder GetSpeed keeping a symbolic 1 percent.

Amid the Nurburgring’s well-documented financial and ownership troubles, Germany fell off the F1 calendar last year and is in doubt for a scheduled return in 2017.

Explaining the 2015 absence from the F1 schedule, Kharitonin said, “We ourselves refused because we did not agree with the organizers on financial matters.”

Kharitonin, however, claims talks with Formula One Management CEO Bernie Ecclestone will resume, according to Forbes Russia.



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