My Team Qi-Meritus.Mahara has confirmed it will compete in the second GP2 Asia season with two cars carrying numbers 18 and 19. The team will test a number of drivers on the 8th and 9th October during the GP2 Asia official tests on the Chinese GP...
My Team Qi-Meritus.Mahara has confirmed it will compete in the second GP2 Asia season with two cars carrying numbers 18 and 19. The team will test a number of drivers on the 8th and 9th October during the GP2 Asia official tests on the Chinese GP track before announcing the 2009 driver lineup.
The first round of the season will take place at Shanghai on 18-19 October, as a support race to the F1 Grand Prix weekend. The season will cover six, two race rounds ending in Bahrain on 19 April 2009.
The only truly Asian team in the GP2 Asia series, My Team Qi-Meritus.Mahara is based in Malaysia. The team is known for having won 27 Asian motorsport titles and for its ability to discover and nurture strong local Asian talent. It currently leads five 2008 Asian championships with Ross Jamison leading the Formula BMW Pacific championship, Earl Bamber leading the Formula FV6 Asia series and teammate James Grunwell 3 points behind in second place, Meritus is determined to continue its winning tradition.
Recently, the team completed a sensational historic double win at the inaugural Singapore Formula One Grand Prix when Meritus drivers Doru Schelariu and Ross Jamison finished first and second in both races in the Formula BMW Pacific championship.
Underlining the team's Malaysian and Saudi roots are its Malaysian Team President Firhat Yuri Bin Dato Mokhzani and Saudi Chairman Raad S. Abduljawad. The team is being supported by sponsors including Qi and Questnet for the second GP2 Asia season. A major new title sponsor will be announced soon. Italian Technical Director Gianfranco Bielli will use his 40 years of experience to ensure the cars are ready for the first race in Shanghai.
Gianfranco Bielli - team principal commented: "Our team is ready for an even more competitive 2009 GP2 Asia season. We have analysed our work from last year and hope to be able to improve on the overall package that we offer to our Asian drivers as well as improving the technical abilities of our mechanics and engineers."
Firhat Yuri Bin dato Mokhzani, team director commented: "Bernie Ecclestone offered us the only Asian license for GP2 and we took up the challenge. Last year, we developed the very latest technology in a very short space of time to get the maximum out of the GP2 Asia cars. GP2 Asia effectively puts us on the doorstep of F1 and are proud to be the Malaysian F1 development team."
Raad S. Abduljawad, team chairman, commented: "The team was on a learning curve last year, but overall we achieved good results. We have ambitious targets for our second season in GP2 Asia which should be helped by the synergy between the team, the sponsors and the team history and roots. We are proud that My Qi-Meritus.Mahara will be the first Arab-Asian team to compete at this high level. With our continued participation in GP2 Asia we have received more recognition in the area and more local support for our team. We have no doubt of our ability to be competitive at the front of the field and help our sponsors build more brand awareness."
Bernie Ecclestone, President, Formula One Management, added: "The GP2 Asia series is an aggressive new series which features a number of strong races and many very quick drivers. The first season put on a really good show and I hope the second year will be even better. I am happy that the teams adapted so well to the challenge, including the series newcomer, My Team Qi-Meritus.Mahara which showed it could be a serious competitor against the established teams. I want to congratulate Peter Thompson, the team founder and owner as well as Raad S. Abduljawad, the team chairman for their enterprise, starting an all Asian and Middle Eastern team from scratch and taking up the challenge to compete with well established high level racing teams who have no end of experience and data from competing in the main summer GP2 series. Their commitment represents a huge logistical challenge but the manner in which the team has been competing with the other teams has been impressive."