The ING Renault F1 Team staged a special demonstration today on the streets of Johannesburg in partnership with the Gauteng Provincial Government.
A month after demonstrating its cars at the Technocentre in Paris, the ING Renault F1 Team Roadshow travelled to South Africa this week end for an extraordinary demonstration in the Sandton district of Johannesburg.
Last year the ING Renault F1 Team staged a similarly exciting spectacle in this area of the city, drawing crowds of 100,000 spectators. The decision was therefore taken to repeat this special event again this year in partnership with the Gauteng Provincial Government.
Nelson Piquet, fresh from his first Formula 1 podium in the German Grand Prix, and Lucas Di Grassi, the team's third driver, were both present to meet the South African public, who had once again turned out in their masses. Their donuts and burnouts with the R27 Renault F1 car delighted the 60, 000 spectators who came on Sunday to watch this extraordinary spectacle.
Gauteng MEC for Finance and Economic Affairs, Paul Mashatile, said at the end of the demonstration: "To us as the Gauteng Provincial Government the partnership with the ING Renault F1 Team is an opportunity to showcase our province's competitive advantages on the international stage. This partnership will further strengthen our efforts to promote Gauteng as an investment and tourism destination and will consolidate our position as the home of champions".
"Our involvement in this partnership is informed by our desire to stimulate the competitive sport sector of the provincial economy, which we believe has enormous potential to contribute towards job creation and higher levels of economic growth. The partnership is also in line with our approach to support the automotive industry as one of the job creating sectors of the provincial economy."
After climbing from the cockpit of his R27, Nelson Piquet commented: "Last year I really enjoyed being part of this event, and this year we have had an equally warm welcome. It was a lot of fun to do this demonstration and I hope that the public also enjoyed it."
Lucas Di Grassi added: "The Roadshow programme is a unique experience that allows people to get close to Formula 1. The public in Johannesburg have been amazing and we have had an incredible reception from everyone. I really hope that they enjoyed this demonstration because that was the objective of the day."