Tag Archives: A1GP

Motorsports Mondial


FIA regional series ends with double Qatari success; UAE’s Al Qassimi finishes runner-up in home event: Kuwait’s Al Nejadi is fifth

Dubai, UAE: Nasser Saleh Al Attiyah cruised to a comfortable victory in the 32nd Dubai International Rally today but lost his FIA Middle East title to fellow-Qatari driver Misfer Al Marri.

Partnered by Italian Giovanni Bernacchini in a Super 2000 Ford Fiesta, Al Attiyah had a winning margin of six mins 16 secs from second-placed UAE driver Sheikh Abdullah Al Qassimi and his British co-driver Steve Lancaster in a Mitsubishi Evolution 9.

Needing only to finish in the top six to become the fourth Qatari to be crowned FIA Middle East rally champion, Al Marri took his Subaru Impreza to third place to complete a wonderful sporting weekend for his country following its successful FIFA 2022 World Cup bid.

Qatar’s Abdulaziz Al Kuwari claimed fourth position with a late burst on the final stage to drop  Kuwait’s Essam Al Nejadi to fifth. Another Qatari, Jaber Al Marri, completed the top six in the eighth and final round of this year’s FIA Middle East series, which was held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Majid bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Arts and Culture Authority.

It was Al Attiyah’s 38th rally victory in the championship and his sixth in Dubai. While the six-times Middle East champion has become a prolific winner, Al Marri is only the second driver in the history of the regional series to capture the Middle East title without recording a victory in the series. Saudi Arabia’s Mamdouh Khayat was the first in 1992.

Consistency has been the key to Al Marri’s success. He finished runner-up in Qatar, Jordan, Saudi and Cyprus and third in Lebanon and Syria, as well as in Dubai.

Al Attiyah said : ‘It has been a perfect rally for me and I’m very happy with the result. Everything went well over the two days and I had no problems. I’m happy for Misfer as he is the new champion.’

Runner’s up spot in his home event saw Al Qassimi climb to third place in the final championship standings above Qatar’s Khaled Al Suwaidi who retired from the rally on the ninth of the event’s 12 stages today with a broken drive shaft.

While Leg 1 had seen a huge disappointment for Al Qassimi’s brother, Sheikh Khaled Al Qassimi who went out with a blown engine while leading, Leg 2 brought a spectacular premature end to the rally for another UAE driver, Rashid Al Ketbi.

He made a flying start to the day, winning the opening stage by 3.4 seconds from Al Attiyah, but then went out of the rally 6.32kms into the next stage when his Super 2000 Skoda Fabia Evo 2 rolled end over end after hitting a bump at high speed.

Al Ketbi and co-driver Khalid Al Kendi were unhurt. The driver said shortly afterwards : “I used soft tyres yesterday and had two punctures. Today I used a hard compound and won the first stage. I was still 43 seconds behind Nasser but I was pushing and still trying to win. It was bad luck”

Motorsports Mondial

Photo: Reuters

Korean Grand Prix is go-go-go

Good news for Formula 1 fans. Charlie Whiting has given the green light to the latest E-era expansion of the Grand Prix circus. The inaugural Korean Grand Prix is no longer in deep kimchi and Hermann Tilke-designed circuit is not kaput.

The race is scheduled for October 24th and the final inspection took place only after the Japanese Grand Prix.

Thousands of miles away, in his home town of Clermont-Ferrand, “Bibendum” is scratching his head, wondering what happened to the 90-day rule of final inspection prior to an F1 race. That was embedded in his “sixth-sense” at the 2005 United States Grand Prix, when his employer was given the “Max” treatment on official policies and procedures, rules and regulations.

All this was served from a plush Monaco apartment while enjoying the delight of Darjeeling’s finest.

We move on to further Seoul searching. Better yet, hop in a Hyundai
Scoupe and drive four hours to the track in Yeongam.

You will not be disappointed.

Chung-Yung-cho, Dear Leader of Korea Auto Valley Operation, organizers of the race, was quoted by Eurosport saying, “The Korea International Circuit has been constructed to the highest standards, and will become the epicenter of motorsport in the country.”

The final three races will take place in three very different environments and settings. From Seoul to Sao Paulo, and then to the season finale in Abu Dhabi.

Will Mark Webber become the first Australian since Alan Jones in 1980 to become world champion? Or will teammate Sebastian Vettel be crowned as the youngest world champion?

“Nando” knows it’s not over till the final race.

Vodaphone McLaren drivers are still on the line with an outside chance.

Will it be Jenson Button retaining or Lewis Hamilton regaining his crown?.

As the sun sets on the Arabian Desert and Yas Marina on the evening of November 14 we will find out.

Bring on the Rose water.

— Nasir Hameed

F1weekly podcast # 449

Photo: Spyker F1/Egmond

F1weekly podcast number 449

Remembering Fisichella at Spa Francorchamps last year.

Motorsports Mondial with Nasir Hameed and…

This weeks Interview HRT reserve driver Christian Klien.

Born in Hohenems, Klien started his motorsport career in his early teens. He raced in karting championships in both Austria and Switzerland, before moving to Formula BMW. After winning several titles in lower Formulas, Klien moved into Formula One, driving for the Jaguar Racing team, alongside Mark Webber. At the end of 2004, however, Jaguar sold its Formula One team to Red Bull, which renamed it Red Bull Racing. In an unusual arrangement, Klien shared a race seat with Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi. He stayed at Red Bull for 2006, whilst Liuzzi moved to the Red Bull junior team, Scuderia Toro Rosso.

After an unsuccessful 2006, Klien’s old teammate Mark Webber replaced him for the 2007 season. Klien was offered alternatives to Formula One for 2007, including driving in the ChampCar series, but he refused and aimed for a seat in Formula One. He secured the test driver’s seat at Honda, despite competition from other drivers, including Gary Paffett.

On 2 February 2008 Klien signed as BMW Sauber’s reserve and test driver for the 2008 Formula One season, alongside Estonian Marko Asmer.

Klien remained in the position of BMW Sauber’s test and reserve driver for 2009.

For 2010, Klien was understood to be a target for Sauber before the seat went to Pedro de la Rosa.

Klien was then tipped to become Hispania Racing’s reserve driver despite being second favourite to ex-US F1 man José María López but neither Klien or López got the seat. It went to former Super Aguri F1 and Spyker F1 driver Sakon Yamamoto. However, he was later signed by Hispania as well as Yamamoto. He took part in his first Grand Prix weekend for three years at the 2010 Spanish Grand Prix, where he drove in the first practice session in place of Karun Chandhok. He replaced Chandok again at the 2010 European Grand Prix where his session was made difficult by problems with his car. He is being linked with a race seat with Renault for 2011.


F1weekly podcast # 443

F1weekly podcast number 443

Renault watching Romain Grosjean return to GP2 this weekend.

Motorsports Mondial with the Duke of Dijon and…

Bridgestone bringing Canadian spice to Germany.

Oh Canada interview special! Nasir speaks with GP3  Status GP team principal Teddy Yip and his drivers Daniel Morad and Robert Wickens.

Status GP was formed in 2005 to run the A1 Team Ireland franchise in the new A1 Grand Prix series. The team’s shareholders are former Jordan Grand Prix Head of Marketing Mark Gallagher, former Formula One driver Dave Kennedy, John Hynes, and Teddy Yip, Jr., whose father Teddy Yip owned the Theodore Racing Formula One team. They also ran the A1 Team Canada operation in 2007–08 and also assisted A1 Team Netherlands in 2008–09, the season in which Team Ireland won the championship title.

In 2010, Status Grand Prix competeS in the new GP3 Series, with Gary Anderson leading the technical side of the team.


F1weekly podcast #442

F1weekly hats now available on the merchandise page.

F1weekly podcast number 442

Mark Webber has moved on from Red Bull wing row.

Renault to introduce F-duct at Spa Francorchamps.

Motorsports Mondial With Nasir Hameed and…

This weeks interview with Adrian Zaugg.

After winning the Bridgestone Cup in Karting, he impressed on a Formula BMW Scholarship Course, he was signed by Austrian energy drink company Red Bull in 2004, for their Red Bull Junior Team programme. For 2005, he moved up to Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, winning one race. He continued briefly in the Eurocup for 2006, before moving up to the World Series by Renault, for Carlin Motorsport. In six races, he achieved one pole position.

For the 2006-07 season, he also made his A1 Grand Prix debut for Team South Africa at Zandvoort, the 2006-07 A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Netherlands. He qualified on pole position in his very first qualifying session, and went on to win the Sprint race, though he crashed out on the first lap of the Feature race.

His impressive outings in A1GP led to him being signed up to drive for Arden International for the 2007 GP2 Series, where he would achieve only four point-scoring finishes, on his way to eighteenth in the championship. Zaugg returned to the World Series by Renault for the 2009 season, as he secured a late drive with the Interwetten.com team. However, he parted company with the team after the Le Mans round, due to a lack of funds. Despite this, he finished fourteenth in the championship.

Zaugg returned to the wheel of a GP2-specification car, when he contested the third round of the 2009–10 GP2 Asia Series in Bahrain, replacing Dani Clos.


F1weekly podcast # 414

Daniel Morad

Rock Solid Racer

Daniel Morad is a talented young racing driver from Toronto. He was born on April 24, 1990. After a successful karting career, he won the Formula BMW US Championship in 2007, and was placed fourth in the Formula BMW world finals in Valencia.

He has also raced in Formula Atlantic and A1GP competition.

Podcast 414 features an exclusive conversation with this talented driver.

Testing the GP3 car at Circuit Paul Ricard earlier this month

Morad will soon announce his racing plans for the 2010 season. Meantime, we invite you to visit his website www.danielmorad.com for more information on his career.