Oct.3 (GMM) As a diminished field gathers for the first race of the fourth season in Holland, serious questions are being asked about the future of the A1GP series.
Bursting onto the scene as the self-proclaimed World Cup of Motorsport three years ago, the category is now beset with problems.Delays in the completion of the new Ferrari designed and powered car meant that the season opener scheduled for Mugello was cancelled.Now, as practice prepares to kick off in Zandvoort, five team countries - Britain, India, Germany, Mexico and Canada - are absent.And according to the Dutch press, the future of five more teams - Brazil, China, France, Portugal and Switzerland - is in doubt."We put our hands up," said a series spokesperson, according to Press Association. "To design, build and test 23 cars in just 11 months, we were always going to be up against it."Willi Weber's Team Germany, meanwhile, looks unlikely to return to the series at all."(2006-7 champion) Nico (Hulkenberg) is still waiting for his prize money. I have written ten reminder letters," Weber, who famously managed Michael Schumacher's F1 career, told the Cologne newspaper Express.The A1 spokesperson, meanwhile, played down suggestions the series' problems could prove terminal."As far as we are concerned we don't anticipate anything other than a full grid for the following race."We would have liked 23 cars on the grid this weekend, but despite that, we will still put on a great show and go racing for the championship, as we will in years to come," she said.