RACING NEWS

President Thabo Mbeki Unveils the South African A1 Grand Prix Car

President Thabo Mbeki Unveils the South African A1 Grand Prix Car image

Text: / Photos: | posted August 30, 2004 10:00

A1 Grand Prix series founder and CEO, His Highness Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Al Maktoum, was honoured and privileged on Monday evening that His Excellency Thabo Mbeki, the President of South Africa, oversaw the proceedings and unveiled the South African A1 Grand Prix car, in the presence of Sheikh Maktoum, the A1 Grand Prix Board members, and the Chairman of the A1 Grand Prix South African team, Mr. Tokyo Sexwale.

"It was an honour and a privilege to meet His Excellency and it was a dream come true to see a country's President taking such personal pride in supporting and promoting his own nation's first ever national motor racing team. It sets an example that should be followed by the respective heads of nations for each of the other countries that will be competing in the inaugural A1 Grand Prix championship. I am eternally grateful to His Excellency Thabo Mbeki, will cherish our time spent this evening and hope that he will grace us with his presence at our inaugural race in South Africa," said Sheikh Maktoum.

Tokyo Sexwale, who announced that the car would carry two numbers - 46664, which was Nelson Mandela's prison number, and 2010, the year South Africa will host the Soccer World Cup - commented, "A1 Grand Prix is the World Cup of Motorsport and will create a new dimension and patriotic edge to one of the world's most popular sports."

The car, complete in its South African livery, will appear at the Kyalami race track on Saturday 6th November, during the Vodacom Power Tour race meeting, where it will be on show in the pits during the day and will also run a number of demonstration laps. The car will be driven by Alan van de Merwe.