Bahrain 2006 calendar announced

BIC Unveils New International Motorsport Calendar As the temperature begins to cool down in Bahrain, activity at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) is heating up with the announcement of the remaining race calendar. The four International...

BIC Unveils New International Motorsport Calendar

As the temperature begins to cool down in Bahrain, activity at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) is heating up with the announcement of the remaining race calendar. The four International events will take place over the next four months and reinforce the BIC's commitment to host a wide variety of motorsport activities.

Commenting on the forthcoming races the BIC's General Manager, Martin Whitaker said: "The circuit has attracted the attention of some very prestigious and exciting race series. With the variety of racing we have on offer there will be something to keep even the most discerning of motorsport fans entertained."

"The Middle East is a region where the people are fascinated with fast cars, dragsters, open seaters etc. With that in mind, we will host four events - each with a different feeling, sound and passion," he said during a press conference held at the US$150 million circuit.

"Such massive exposure can only bring renewed interest in inward investment and tourism. Today Bahrain, with its highly-developed infrastructure, modern society and its state-of-the- art living facilities, offers tourists and business travellers everything they need," said Whitaker adding that "the Bahrain International Circuit is a 365-day benefit for the business and tourism community."

The action kicks off on the 28th September with the final round of the stand-alone GP2 series. Commenting on the race, Director of PR and Governmental Affairs, Shaikh Salman bin Isa Al Khalifa said: "The highly competitive race will bring together the 'future F1' drivers to race on the Middle East's only Grand Prix circuit."

With maximum speeds of 320kph, only a few seconds shy of F1 pace, the GP2 car is extremely advanced in terms of looks, technology and performance. The 600bhp Bridgestone-shod single-seater car features a Dallara chassis, Renault engine, carbon brakes and paddle shift gear selection. Drivers include former Formula One Driver, Gianmaria Bruni, and Nico Rosberg, son of former Formula One champion Keke Rosberg and Mathias Lauda, son of three-times former Formula One Champion, Niki Lauda.

The FIA European Drag Racing Festival follows the GP2 on 10th November. "Drag racing is huge in Bahrain so we anticipate a really good turn out for what promises to be a very entertaining and exciting weekend's racing," added Shaikh Salman.

"Dragsters are the fastest race cars on earth. Two top fuel dragsters are more powerful than 15 Grand Prix cars and reach 100mph in one second and 300mph in five. The race consists of two drivers racing head-to-head over a quarter of a mile, known as the strip ," he said.

Next on the agenda for the Gulf nation is the final round of the FIA GT Championship to be held on November 25th. With more than 70 cars of different brands and models, both current and historic from around the world, this event will present an impressive line-up giving spectators a new racing experience.

Top of the line street sports cars such as Porsches, Ferraris and Chryslers will keep the fans on their feet as they vie for the first ever Bahrain GT championship. The Bahrain GT festival held last year as a preview was declared a success as the drivers arrived to the desert track to introduce the different breed of racing found in the world of GT racing to the new wave of fans in the region.

To top off all the action, as Bahrain celebrates its National Day on December 16th, the stars of the four Formula BMW championships will arrive to battle it out for the Championship title. The World Final of the Formula BMW will be held for the first time on the desert track and promises to finish the Bahraini racing season off in style.

Champions of Formula BMW UK, USA, Asia and Germany will take part in the event held for the first time in the history of the series.

Shaikh Salman added: "Bahrainis and Arabs will be watching the Formula BMW final extremely closely as two Bahrainis, Shaikh Salman bin Rashid Al Khalifa and Hamad Al Fardan are currently taking part in the Formula BMW Asia. What better way for the BIC to finish its second racing season that with a home-grown win!"

-bic-

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About this article
Series Drag , Formula 1 , FIA F2 , Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Gianmaria Bruni , Keke Rosberg , Nico Rosberg , Mathias Lauda , Hamad Al Fardan