Defending Champions A1 Team Germany start third season with fastest time -- new environmental commitment from A1GP As reigning 2006/2007 season champions the A1 Team Germany squad and franchise holder and motorsport manager Willi Weber face up...
Defending Champions A1 Team Germany start third season with fastest time -- new environmental commitment from A1GP
As reigning 2006/2007 season champions the A1 Team Germany squad and franchise holder and motorsport manager Willi Weber face up to the challenge during the third A1GP World Cup of Motorsport, which starts on 30 September at Zandvoort in the Netherlands. Willi Weber's team started its season's preparations by posting the fastest lap with Christian Vietoris at the pre-season test in Silverstone, England. The organisers of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport announced the start of a long-term environment protection initiative during the test.
The World Cup of Nations will be held once again during winter 2007/2008 with the well-proven, near 550 hp formula cars. All the cars are identical and are prepared by a single company to ensure performance parity for the 22 competing nations. The series appears at eleven circuits on five continents between September 2007 and May 2008, in which nations, and not drivers, fight exclusively for overall championship honours. The new qualifying format that differentiates between the sprint and feature race, a new points system and a second mandatory pit stop in the feature race number among the most important changes to the sporting regulations.
The series establishes clear trends in environmental protection through the implementation of various technical and organisational innovations. With immediate effect, the 3.4 litre V8 engine will be powered by Hiperflo E30, a fuel consisting of up to 30 per cent biofuel. The Bio-Ethanol is obtained from European sugar beet, reduces the nitrogen-oxide emissions and decreases CO2 production by up to 21 per cent. As a result, A1GP assumes a pioneering role among the championship held worldwide. Four pillars form the environmental policy: Reduce (a reduction of environmental pollution), Replace (the search for environmentally friendly solutions), Offset (to alleviate negative effects) and Promote (the promotion of environmentally friendly initiative). These measures include the use of electric scooters in the paddock and marketing initiatives to increase environmental awareness. The series reaches a sizeable target audience in the process: Last year 83 million television viewers watched the live broadcasts, while the total number of fans in the grandstands increased by 16 per cent to 700,000.
A1 Team Germany got its season off to a good start by setting the best time at the official A1GP World Cup of Motorsport two-day test at Silverstone. Christian Vietoris from Gonnersdorf in Germany's Eifel region was 0.247 seconds faster than the British team after recording a lap time of 1:10.05 minutes around the 3.619 kilometre circuit. The 18-year old German, who competed in numerous practice sessions and one race for A1 Team Germany last season, will be the number one driver at the majority of the eleven races this season. The team will nominate a second driver at a later date.
"The result of our test at Silverstone was excellent," said a delighted Vietoris. "We used the time available on both days to change the suspension geometry and to improve the set-up. I prefer a car that reacts very directly on the front axle on turn-in. I'd already managed to set the fastest time with the fourth and final set of fresh tyres in the morning on the second test day. None of our 21 competitors were able to better it during the afternoon."
Team owner Willi Weber is cautious despite the successful opening test: "The benchmark is obviously very high after winning the championship and the strong competition means we can't afford to rest on our laurels. Furthermore, with Christian Vietoris we rely on a new driver. However, he has already scored many promising results in his career. His fastest lap at the test shows that he will also be among the front runners for A1 Team Germany. Nico Hulkenberg and David Sears Motorsport fulfilled a dream for us by winning the World Cup last year. Nico now takes the next step in his career. The demands on us as defending champions are high. Our target is to justify these expectations."
-credit: a1 team germany