A1 TEAM MALAYSIA TAKES CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD TO CHINA A1GP World Cup of Motorsport action resumes this week with the second round of the 2008/09 season taking place in Chengdu, China. Fairuz Fauzy will be representing his nation once again with the...
A1 TEAM MALAYSIA TAKES CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD TO CHINA
A1GP World Cup of Motorsport action resumes this week with the second round of the 2008/09 season taking place in Chengdu, China. Fairuz Fauzy will be representing his nation once again with the support of Aaron Lim. Lim returns to the team for the "developing nation and rookie" session at the head of the weekend. A win and a second place finish in the first event for Fauzy has kick started the Malaysian team's campaign. The team takes the championship lead into this second of ten rounds which will be held around the globe over the coming months.
Fauzy topped the leader board with 22 World Cup of Motorsport points, claiming the first victory recorded by the new A1GP Powered by Ferrari car, and following this up with a second place finish in the second of the two races. A dominant performance by Fauzy, backed by the strong team of engineers and mechanics, has put Malaysia at the front of the pack as the nations head to China.
Goldenport Circuit, Chengdu, will host an A1GP for the first time and joins three other Chinese cities in showcasing the unique brand of racing that this Series offers. In previous seasons A1GP has visited Shanghai, Beijing and Zhuhai, and in this fourth season moves location to Chengdu City, the capital of Sichuan province.
Fauzy says of racing at a new, unknown, venue, "We're heading to a venue that is an unknown quantity for most of us. There's very little track data available to us and I think maybe only one driver will have raced here previously, so it will be a truly level playing field. It's good to present A1GP at new locations and open up new audiences to the Series."
Of heading into the weekend as championship leader Fauzy adds, "I'm proud to be heading the nations table at this early stage, but there's a long way to go and a lot can happen, so we just need to take one weekend at a time. The aim has to be consistency and maintaining the performance level that we attained in Zandvoort. However some of the teams have been out testing to bring their test miles up to the same as others, so I'm expecting the competition to be tougher. There'll also be more teams out in Chengdu which increases the challenge for us."
Lim is keen to have his first opportunity of driving the new A1GP Powered by Ferrari car, with the young Malaysian driver taking the wheel for the first session of the weekend. A1GP has continued its tradition of giving young talent the chance to drive the A1GP car in an hour of running set aside for up and coming drivers. Lim says of returning to the team, "I'm very proud to have been asked to continue with the team this season and I can't wait to get behind the wheel of the new A1GP car. My only experience of the car so far was sitting in the A1GP simulator. This gave me a feel of what is ahead, but there's nothing like the reality of driving, so I'm very excited and eager to be driving again."
Jack Cunningham, Chief Executive, A1 Team Malaysia, looks ahead to the Chengdu weekend saying, "We've enjoyed nearly five weeks as championship leaders and celebrating our achievements, with Fauzy and the team all performing so well in Zandvoort. Now we've tasted this level of success we just want more. We're realistic though; there'll be more teams on track, many have now had a little more testing so the playing field will be level. With the competition very high as we know from previous seasons, we'll have to work hard to stay at the top. The season has only just started and there's a long way to go, so we need to stay focused on the weekend and target as many points as possible."
The A1GP World Cup of Motorsport, Chengdu, China, is the second round of the 2008/09 Series. A1GP travels from China to Sepang for the third round, A1 Team Malaysia's home race weekend from 21-23 November 2008.