Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Indonesia beckons - A1 Team Canada Report

Courtesy Stuart Morrison – PR Manager, A1 Team Canada

Sentul, Indonesia (February 07, 2006) – The A1 Grand Prix of Nations heads to Indonesia this weekend, 10-12th February, for Round 8 of the inaugural ‘World Cup of Motorsport’ hosted at the Sentul International Circuit.

A1 Team Canada racer Sean McIntosh arrived today along with the rest of the Canadian team to acclimatize to the heat and humidity having experienced similar conditions at the Malaysian A1GP event last November. A1 Team Canada heads into this weekend’s Indonesian round looking to steer clear of the incidents and accidents that denied them back-to-back top-ten finishes, and the resulting points haul, in South Africa last time out.

A slow puncture robbed Sean McIntosh of a potential top-eight finish in the Sprint race before he fought to salvage a point with a tenth place finish in the Feature despite an unscheduled trip to the pits for a new nosecone and a broken steering column in the dying stages of the race. The 20-year-old’s efforts in Durban kept A1 Team Canada in the top-ten in the Nations Standings with four rounds remaining. While South Africa hosted A1GP’s first street race, this weekend’s action returns to a permanent road course, the 3.96km, 11-turn Sentul International Circuit in West Java, 45- minutes from Indonesia’s capital city Jakarta.

As the first major international open-wheel series to visit since its construction in 1994, a large turnout is expected over the weekend with the home crowd undoubtedly vocal in their support of A1 Team Indonesia’s Ananda Mikola. Indonesia marks Sean McIntosh’s eighth straight A1GP start for A1 Team Canada. The Vancouver native is set to hand over steering duties to five-time Champ Car winner Patrick Carpentier from Joliette, Québec for Rounds 9 and 10 in Mexico (24-26 February) and the USA (10-12 March).

Preparing to race on another unfamiliar circuit McIntosh commented: “I’m looking forward to getting to Sentul and learning the track. I’ve studied the layout but I’m keen to get there to evaluate it for myself. I’m hopeful it will suit my style but there’s always that element of the unknown heading into Friday’s practice sessions. The conditions will be similar to what we experienced in Malaysia with the heat and the humidity. I’ve been informed there’s a monsoon just about every day at Noon so it could add a bit of spice to the qualifying sessions and Sunday’s races. It’s my last time racing for A1 Team Canada before Patrick takes over for a couple of events so I’m hoping for another strong showing. We’re all working hard to improve our position and we want to be winning races!”

Sunday’s A1GP races can be viewed live or on demand in Canada on www.a1gp.com.

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