A1 TEAM LEBANON ARRIVES IN CHINA FOR A1 GRAND PRIX SEASON FINALE

A1 TEAM LEBANON ARRIVES IN CHINA FOR A1 GRAND PRIX SEASON FINALE

30.03.2006: A1 TEAM LEBANON ARRIVES IN CHINA FOR A1 GRAND PRIX SEASON FINALE



A1 Team Lebanon has arrived in China this week for the final event in the inaugural A1 Grand Prix, a winter season of international motor racing which pits nation against nation, competing for the World Cup of Motorsport. The team, with its three drivers, Khalil Beschir, Graham Rahal and Basil Shaaban, will be competing at the state-of-the-art Shanghai International Circuit.

Graham Rahal has been selected to drive for A1 Team Lebanon for this season finale, after demonstrating his potential at Laguna Seca, running in second place for nearly half the Feature race distance. Rahal has been gaining valuable race and test experience in the two weeks between A1GP race weekends, testing his Champ Car Atlantic car for the forthcoming summer season and competing in the 12 hours of Sebring sportscar race.

The Shanghai facility opened in 2004, hosting the first Chinese Formula One Grand Prix. It is located 30 km outside the citycentre, a venue built on marshland, which required 40,000 stabilising pillars before the land could be developed. The 5.4 km track layout takes its inspiration from the Chinese Shang character, which means "above" and ties in with Shanghai. Other symbols represented in the architecture originate from Chinese history, such as the team buildings arranged like pavilions in a lake to resemble the ancient Yuyan-Garden in Shanghai and the roofs of the grandstands shaped as Lotus leaves. With seven left and seven right turns winding in different directions, and a long back straight, the circuit offers the drivers another new challenge in the A1 Grand Prix series.

Rahal is ready for the Shanghai challenge and says, "It is going to be quite special to drive on a current Formula one circuit, particularly this one, which is such a futuristic facility. Everyone in A1 Team Lebanon is very determined to score some World Cup of Motorsport points this race weekend and this will be our goal. I don’t think many of the drivers have previous experience at this track, so we’ll all be starting from the same baseline. I’ll need to learn the track quickly and then work with the team to set the car to get the best from it and be ready to qualify well, which is very important in this Series. It all starts tomorrow and I’m ready for the challenge."

The A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Shanghai, China concludes the 2005/06 season of A1 Grand Prix, a unique new motor racing series which pits nation against nation in international competition around the globe. The 11 events of the Series has taken the field of teams to the four corners of the world, with events in Europe, Middle East, Asia, Australia, Africa, North and South America.

 

- A1 Team Lebanon -
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30.03.2006 / MaP

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