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Old 17 Jan 2008, 07:58 (Ref:2107811)   #1
Kiwi3
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Kiwi3 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the gridKiwi3 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the grid
A1GP v Regular Season

John Martin's unavailability for the Mexico round due to F3 commitments, as mentioned in another thread, got me thinking. To date in almost all occasions drivers have prioritised regular season 'jobs' ahead of A1GP in order to further their regular career, as most of them have the end goal of trying to get to F1.

Alex Yoong is likely done with F1 and building his long term future with A1GP (presume he is a shareholder in the franchise but don't know for sure). The only other occasion I can think of is Adrian Zaugg chosing Zandvoort round over the last round of a disappointing GP2 season (wise choice as winning the Sprint race would have done his reputation much more good than another GP2 round). Can anyone think of any other examples?

I wonder if this will turn around from season 4 once Ferrari are involved. Perhaps with a higher profile in the future and payment to drivers once more sponsors come on board, GP2, Champcar, Euro F3 etc will find themselves without drivers for some round as they will be off doing A1GP...
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Old 21 Jan 2008, 02:18 (Ref:2110280)   #2
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One problem I see is the deliberate lack of promotion for the A1GP drivers. Drivers want to enter a championship where they can get their name across to gain fame and thus, by extension, sponsorship.

In all sports, we talk about the personalities inside the sport, even if it is a team sport. After World Cup 2006, everyone wanted to know more about Zidane, not Italy, not France, just Zidane (and maybe Materazzi.) In the Olympics, we want to know more about Thrope, Michael Johnson, Liu Yang...etc. The athletes are the stars and that's what people want to and will pay to see.

A1GP needs to consider having a Drivers' Championship in order to attract quality drivers. Once we have established stars in A1GP, then other drivers wil want to come in and try to beat him and TV companies will want to broadcast and sponsors will want to come in.
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Old 21 Jan 2008, 04:54 (Ref:2110298)   #3
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i agree with all of the above especially about the drivers championship.

maybe to promote the series and the drivers the champion gets a test with the Ferrari F1 team, which would get them noticed in in the F1 circle and lead to a possible test or race drive the following season (ala Hulkenberg).
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Old 23 Jan 2008, 20:14 (Ref:2112201)   #4
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Original poster must be psychic! - http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/64808

Jani chooses A1GP over Champ Car
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Old 24 Jan 2008, 08:19 (Ref:2112460)   #5
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Kiwi3 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the gridKiwi3 should be qualifying in the top 10 on the grid
Not psychic, Neel Jani read my post and my important opinion is what made up his mind...

I must say I disagree about the driver's championship idea. That would make A1GP just another racing series, and is contrary to what A1GP is all about.

People who watch the Olympics and the World Cup (football) do so primarily to support their country, although they are also interested in individual athletes that is secondary. Why should motorsport be any different?
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Old 24 Jan 2008, 20:49 (Ref:2112852)   #6
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Jeroen Bleekemolen will probably drive the full A1 season in exclusion to everything else.
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Old 24 Jan 2008, 21:55 (Ref:2112904)   #7
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strider has a real shot at the championship!strider has a real shot at the championship!strider has a real shot at the championship!strider has a real shot at the championship!strider has a real shot at the championship!strider has a real shot at the championship!
I have always thought that the way the A1GP season overlaps the regular season is a drawback to it. Particularly at the beginning of the regular season a driver like John Martin will give priority to what he sees as his career path.

Neel Jani's decision is interesting, but probably logical. If Switzerland wins A1GP, the odds are that he will be offered a drive in Europe for the regular season, even if it's not in single-seaters. Maybe Le Mans and the LMS.
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Old 25 Jan 2008, 02:29 (Ref:2113093)   #8
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I am never a fan of the drivers drive in multiple championship series. In my opinion, it is difficult to excel in any of them when you do them simultaneously. It's a fine point though that many drivers choose other series over A1GP. The key point I think is A1GP needs to prove itself as a legitimate path to F1 and Nico Huelkenberg good performance in F1 (assuming he does) is going to help that.

This also brings back to my opinion that A1GP needs to display better and more responsible racing.
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Old 25 Jan 2008, 04:49 (Ref:2113134)   #9
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Does A1GP really need to be a pathway to F1? Why not a career goal in it's own right. May not seem realistic now but why not in a couple more years when it has grown further.
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Old 27 Jan 2008, 23:26 (Ref:2115086)   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi3
Does A1GP really need to be a pathway to F1? Why not a career goal in it's own right. May not seem realistic now but why not in a couple more years when it has grown further.
Let's not kid ourselves. Young drivers dream of getting into F1, not dream of getting into A1GP. Right now, A1GP needs legitimacy as a competition that has and builds legitimately great drivers. If it does breed great drivers, it's a normal recourse that they find themselves into F1. So, in my opinion, the series gains a lot of good ground if it is a legitimate ground towards better career opportunities for the drivers.
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Old 31 Jan 2008, 03:15 (Ref:2117480)   #11
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If it wants to be a proper career goal, then it needs to be about drivers. Otherwise the drivers can't make some serious money. If the drivers can make good money from competing in the series then they will stay.

You don't see NASCAR drivers worry about moving to F1 because they make very good money where they are, even if they finish way down the order. A1GP needs to find ways to make sure the drivers make good money from competing in it.
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Old 19 May 2008, 07:26 (Ref:2206126)   #12
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RichardRenes was spot on, from Jeroen Bleekemolen (excerpt from article on series official website):

"I have other options [in motor racing] so I would like to know early on if Im going to stay. I want to be focused on A1GP so I can tell other series that I could only race half their season or a few races while I concentrated on A1GP.

Attaboy!

Bleekemolen is not exactly knocking on F1's door anyway though and Doornbos surely wasn't in the Brands pits for nothing, so we'll see...but that belongs in the driver speculation thread.
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Old 30 May 2008, 13:45 (Ref:2215293)   #13
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Franky Cheng chose A1GP over the first few rounds of the F3 Euroseries
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Old 30 May 2008, 14:46 (Ref:2215330)   #14
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^ And Adrian Zaugg chose the 2007-08 A1GP season opener at Zandvoort over the GP2 Series finale at Valencia last September.
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Old 30 May 2008, 20:06 (Ref:2215513)   #15
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On the other hand, it's why Robert Doornbos chose Superleague Formula over A1GP.. He'll be sure to be ready for the next season of Indycar
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