On Saturday, the A1 Grand Prix, the motorsports equivalent of the World Cup, will get underway. The new open-wheel series, which makes its debut this weekend and offers some changes for racing fans used to the established norms of Formula One, has a simple concept: it pits one nation against another. The 12 race series will include athletes from 25 nations, including India, Pakistan, and China. Niki Lauda, a former Formula One driver, praised the idea, calling it “quite brilliant.”
“It’s a winter series which nobody has yet,” he said. Sheik Al Maktoum, the crown prince of Dubai’s nephew, conceived of the A1 Grand Prix. He thinks it will attract a whole new audience interested in motorsports. According to H H Sheikh Makhtoum Hasher Al Makhtoum, “the A1 Grand Prix is the World Cup of racing,” with 25 countries competing for the title.
Team India’s drivers are Karun Chandhok and Armaan Ebrahim, and they came in fourth in the most recent test run, behind the cars from Germany, Canada, and Ireland. It will be a real test of driving ability, with uniform livery throughout all countries. Ferrari F1 driver Rubens Barrichello praised the plan, saying, “At the end of the day, you’re looking for commonalities between the vehicles, and whomever wins is the best. Since the A1 Grand Prix is a winter series, it will not conflict with F1. A total of $1,000,000 in cash prizes will be awarded.