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Brands gets A1 GP date

Brands Hatch will provide the venue for the opening round of the inaugural A1 Grand Prix Championship, it has been announced at the Autosport International Racing Car Show on Thursday

Brands gets A1 GP date

The new championship, which uses identical 3.4-litre V8-powered Lola-Zytek cars represented by different nations from around the world, will run during the off-season of 2005 and the first race, to be run on Brands Hatch's Grand Prix layout will take place on September 18. The car itself makes its international public debut in ASI's Live Action Arena this week.

"I am extremely proud and excited to be able to announce that Brands Hatch will host the first round of the inaugural A1GP Championship," said venue owner and former Formula 1 driver Jonathan Palmer. "We already have a world class motorcycle event for the World Superbikes, and now we have a world class car race.

"The Lola-Zytek machine is an impressive concept and it will be very fast. It's going to be the fastest race at Brands Hatch since the 1986 British Grand Prix! (which Palmer competed in for Zakspeed)"

"It is our intention to run the race on the Grand Prix circuit. It's a fantastic and brilliant track, that drivers still wax lyrical about. We are working with the MSA, and indirectly the FIA, to upgrade the circuit to the standard necessary to run the race on the full layout."

The series founder, His Highness Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Al Maktoum, is confident that the new series is on track to meet its ambitious targets.

"We have finalised nearly half the tracks," he said. "We have 13 teams signed up. This is the first time that a world championship would have 80 percent of the world's population represented."

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