Macau Grand Prix newsletter 2009-03-20

Macau Grand Prix Celebrates 56th Year Sterling Race Programme Announced The 56th Macau Grand Prix will be held from November 19-22 this year. The 2009 edition of the blue riband event is particularly meaningful as this year the Macau...

Macau Grand Prix Celebrates 56th Year

Sterling Race Programme Announced

The 56th Macau Grand Prix will be held from November 19-22 this year. The 2009 edition of the blue riband event is particularly meaningful as this year the Macau Special Administrative Region celebrates the 10th Anniversary of the Macau Reunification.

Continuing its tradition of staging an impressive race programme, the Macau Grand Prix will once again feature its three headline races: The Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix, which is the official FIA Formula 3 Intercontinental Cup; the final round of the prestious 2009 FIA World Touring Car Championship (FIA WTCC), the Guia Race of Macau; and the spectacular Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix.

First held in 1983 and won by the late, great Ayrton Senna, the Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix is now in it 27th year. No fewer than 16 of this year's 20 FIA Formula One World Championship drivers have raced on Macau's famous Guia street circuit, where former champions have included Michael Schumacher and David Coulthard. In 2008, Keisuke Kunimoto became only the second Japanese driver in history to win the Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix, the other being Takuma Sato who took victory in 2001.

November will also see Macau host the season finale of the FIA WTCC for the fifth consecutive year. In each of the past four years, the Championship has come down to the wire in Macau, with Briton Andy Priaulx winning three titles in a row before SEAT's Yvan Muller broke his winning streak by capturing his first FIA WTCC Championship title in 2008.

The Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix is considered one of the most challenging road races in the world and now, in its 43rd year, is as breathtaking as it has ever been. In 2008, it was elation for Stuart Easton, as the Briton captured his first win on the Guia Circuit.

Complementing the three feature races is a high-calibre support programme of five thrilling races: the Macau GT Cup, the Hotel Fortuna MAC/HKG Interport Race, the CTM Macau Touring Car Race, the Macau Road Sport Challenge, and the final round of the 2009 Formula BMW Pacific season.

After triumphant debuts for four of the support races last year, the Macau Grand Prix will, in 2009, continue to build upon this success. Beginning the with Macau GT Cup, this 10-lap invitational race will feature approximately 30 popular Grand Touring race cars from some of the world's most famous marques.

The Hotel Fortuna MAC/HKG Interport Race is an opportunity for the leading touring car drivers from the neighbouring SARs to go head-to-head. Each year, more racing talent emerges from Macau and Hong Kong, and the 10-lap showdown on November 21 will feature up to 18 drivers from each city, combining for an intensely competitive race.

The CTM Macau Touring Car Race has been a long-standing component of the support race programme. Ever-popular, the race is open to approximately 30 drivers from the Asian region, and the 12-lap race for Super Production racing cars is always a crowd-pleaser.

The invitational Macau Road Sport Challenge is a 10-lap race open to modified road cars, which are divided into three classes depending on cylinder capacity.

Returning to the Guia Circuit is Formula BMW Pacific, the region's premier junior racing series which assists young karters, aged 15 and older, to make the transition to single-seater racing. Since its debut in 2003, Formula BMW Pacific has seen its drivers graduate to GP2, European and Asian Formula 3, A1GP and Speed Car, and several are well on the ladder to the highest echelons of the sport.

Tickets for the 56th Macau Grand Prix are already in demand. Racing aficionados from across Asia and the world, as well as the legions of local fans, are already snapping up the best seats in the house for the November race weekend. Tickets may be purchased via the 24-hour hotlines: (Macau) (853) 2855 5555/ (Hong Kong) (852) 2380 5083/ (China) (86) 139 269 11111. Ticket information is available from the organizers at (853) 8796 2210 / 8796 2242.

-credit: macau.grandprix.gov.mo

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Series BIKE , F3 , WTCC

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