Bucharest 2007 event launched

LOOKING FORWARD TO 2007 EXCITING GT RUNS IN CENTRE OF BUCHAREST An extremely successful press conference was held in Bucharest on November 5th, to launch the 2007 round of the FIA GT Championship, which will be held on a street circuit around...


An extremely successful press conference was held in Bucharest on November 5th, to launch the 2007 round of the FIA GT Championship, which will be held on a street circuit around the Romanian parliamentary buildings. The circuit has been designed by Hermann Tilke, leading architect of Formula One circuits such as Bahrain and Shanghai.

With 80 journalists and eight camera crews on site, and six TV channels showing the event live on television, over 15,000 spectators packed around part of the track which will be used next May, to watch a variety of FIA GT and GT3 cars put on demonstration runs and taxi rides. Cars included a Vitaphone-liveried Maserati GranSport Light, Lamborghini Murcielago and Gallardo GT3 cars run by Reiter Engineering and two Renauer Motorsport Porsches, while drivers such as former FIA GT Champions Thomas Biagi and Karl Wendlinger were present, as well as Romanian drivers Mihai Marinescu, Doru Sechelariu (both Formula Renault 2000) and Claudiu David (Dacia Logan Cup).

Mr. Harmut Beyer, CEO of the Bucharest Ring, said : "After working for two years on this Project, I am very happy to introduce the new race circuit in the centre of the capital of Romania, Bucharest. The circuit will be held on a place with a unique, fantastic view around the Parliament building. At the time whem Romania is entering the European Union it will bring a lot of attention, public relations and interest in the country. The event itself will offer a whole program over the week-end and lots of entertainment for the whole family. I would like to express my special thanks to the Major Mayor Mr. Videanu and the President of the Romanian Automobile Club, Mr. Niculescu, for their exceptional support in the implementation of this Project"

Mr Adriean Videanu, General Mayor of Bucharest said. "I am very happy that this project is becoming reality and that Bucharest will host such an extraordinary and exciting event," he said. "The city and the people will profit from this because it will present Romania in a different light and will show how friendly and hospitable Romanians are. This will give an opportunity to international companies for investments in different areas in Bucharest and Romania. Bucharest will take the place on the side of other big capitals in the world which host big sport events."

Stephane Ratel, Chairman of SRO, Promoter of the FIA GT Championship, was present at the event. "There was great disappointment among the competitors and press alike when the 2006 edition had to be postponed, and we are all delighted that this event will now finally come to pass," he said. " We hope that the public in Bucharest will turn out in great numbers to see our magnificent cars, representing some of the greatest makes of sportcars : Aston Martin, Corvette, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, Porsche and Saleen. The 2007 season will see a new two-hour format, better for spectators and TV viewers, and a guarantee of even closer and more exciting races. Moreover, we will be bringing two other series with us to add to the excitement. The innovative FIA GT3 European Championship is a Cup of Cups series for non-professional drivers, which has thrilled spectators in its inaugural year, thanks to its packed grids and exciting races. And the Lloyds TSB Insurance British F3 International Series is one of the leading single-seater series for Formula One drivers of the future. With the combination of the three series, SRO will be bringing no fewer than 100 cars to Bucharest."

Race Alliance driver Karl Wendlinger made countless taxi drives on the provisional street course around the palace, nowadays the location of the Romanian parliament. The 3.1 km circuit was designed by leading F1 architect Hermann Tilke, who has already designed and built the Grand Prix tracks in Bahrain, Istanbul and China among others. "We just built up a fraction of the entire circuit for today, of course. Many more adjustments will be necessary for the FIA GT race next year", the man from Aachen explained, "For example we will lay new asphalt in the braking zones and in the corners." Karl Wendlinger was enthusiastic: "It's not a typical street course, because there's just a few corners with four long straights -- but the backdrop is overwhelming. This race will further increase the value of our championship for sure." Lukas Lichtner-Hoyer, team owner of RaceAlliance, thought likewise: "Looking at the amount of spectators that were already present today, we can expect a real spectacle."

-credit: fiagt

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Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Karl Wendlinger , Stéphane Ratel , Thomas Biagi , Lukas Lichtner-Hoyer , Claudiu David , Doru Sechelariu , Mihai Marinescu
Teams Reiter Engineering