to Round Two at the Chengdu International Circuit
Following the A1GP test at Silverstone on 23rd October, A1 Team Monaco looks forward to visiting the Peoples Republic of China next week for round two of the 2008/9 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport (2-3 November 2008).
Clivio Piccione, Driver and Seat-Holder, A1 Team Monaco: “We had the chance to work with our new engineer at the test and understand the way in which we both work before China. We tried a few updates on the set-up to try to go in the direction of what we believe Chengdu will be like. We did a lot of pitstop practice and we made a huge step forward from what we were able to do in Zandvoort. This will be my first visit to China and it is always nice to visit a new country and to discover a new culture. I am also looking forward to feeling the atmosphere among the Chinese fans."
Graham Taylor, Team Principal, A1 Team Monaco: “It was great for the team to be back on track testing at Silverstone last week. Given the short amount of time that the team has been together, significant progress was made. Car tests were combined with pitstop practice and we also used the opportunity to continue to forge internal relationships. We are very much looking forward to our second race of year and the challenges that Chenghu International Circuit will bring.”
Chengdu International Circuit, often known as the Goldenport Circuit, sits 16km Southwest of Chengdu City Centre. This 13-corner, 3.367km track hosts A1GP for the first time in 2008, and becomes the fourth successive Chinese circuit to hold a round of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport in the four years of the category’s existence.
Having raced previously at Shanghai International Circuit, Beijing International Street Circuit and Zhuhai International Circuit, A1GP Powered by Ferrari has an established race pedigree in the People’s Republic of China. The nation was also one of the original seat-holders in the first season of A1GP in 2005, just one year after the country had hosted its first Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Having only hosted Formula Asia and Touring Car events little is known of what to expect from the new circuit on the A1GP calendar, meaning that everyone will arrive in Chengdu with a relatively level playing field.
Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, has grown to become one of China’s most vibrant and crucial centres for economics in the modern Republic. There have been inhabitants in the region for over 4000 years and the area in which Chengdu now sits was traditionally known as “the country of heaven.”
In more recent times however, Chengdu received global attention when a catastrophic earthquake hit Sichuan province in May 2008. The quake took the lives of 60,000 people and destroyed a large number of buildings, although central Chengdu itself escaped relatively unscathed. The inaugural A1GP race in Chengdu is proof evident of the strength and resilience of character of the people of this historic Chinese city.