France, Switzerland, USA Added

France, Switzerland and the USA are the latest countries to be added to the A1 Grand Prix line-up, Autosport-Atlas can reveal

France, Switzerland, USA Added

The three countries will be formally confirmed later today and will all be present at the series inaugural test at Silverstone, taking place on Wednesday and Thursday this week.

The French team has been secured by current GP2 and World Series by Renault runners DAMS, with owner Jean Paul Driot buying the franchise.

GP2 driver Alexander Premat, who won today's race in Hungary, has further confirmed to Autosport-Atlas that he will be testing the A1 GP car in the next few weeks.

The franchise for the crucial American market has been secured by Communications tycoon, Rick Weidinger. A1 Team Switzerland will be headed by former Sauber and Porsche Motorsport Director Max Welti.

A1 Grand Prix's CEO, Tony Teixeira confirmed the involvement of the teams. He said: "The inclusion of France and Switzerland significantly increases A1 Grand Prix's European footprint providing traditional competition for the likes of A1 Teams from Great Britain and the Netherlands.

"Looking across the Atlantic, Mr Weidinger's support has presented a significant opportunity to develop A1 Grand Prix's profile in the influential American market. I am sure with an American entry into A1 Grand Prix, the Series will be backed by the patriotism of the American fans and will prove a major success in North America'"

The line-up means that 19 countries have been officially unveiled, with Germany, Italy and Ireland expected to join them soon.

Team India was officially launched yesterday, with series creator Sheikh Maktoum driving the 550bhp A1 Grand Prix car through the streets of Delhi. The car, decked in the orange, green and white of the Indian flag, was flagged off by external affairs minister Natwar Singh and Bollywood film actor Anil Kapoor.


Additional reporting by David Cameron

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