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51,000 attend Eastern Creek

NEWS STORY
06/11/2005

51,000 race fans across three days packed Sydney's Eastern Creek International Raceway for the first ever A1 Grand Prix of Nations held in the city and every single one of them were treated to a world-class event.

Chairman of the event, 1980 World Formula One Champion, Alan Jones was "delighted with the turnout."

"We proved that by holding the event in Sydney we can attract a good crowd to Eastern Creek. Not only were there Australian flags, but flags from all nations, which is exactly what we expected from Sydney being such a multi-cultural city."

Jones added he was pleasantly surprised at the crowd numbers. ‘I've got to admit that I was nervous. I didn't know how the public would take to it, but they've embraced it, there were flags from all over the world and we had the Brazilians with their Samba drums – it was a fantastic atmosphere."

The fans were treated to some awesomely close racing on the 3.93 kilometre race circuit, with plenty to cheer about for the Australian contingent – Will Davison finishing sixth in the Feature Race aboard the Foster's adorned A1 Team Australia car, adding five points to A1 Team Australia's World Cup of Motorsport tally.

Prior to the Sprint Race, an opening ceremony that celebrated the Australian culture, tradition and overall way of life warmed the big crowd up for the excitement of the A1 Grand Prix of Nations - from the Man from Snowy River to a celebration of multicultural Australia, the ceremony culminated in the drivers being presented to the huge crowd aboard Surf Lifesaving Boats.

Australian driver, Will Davison was one that was blown away by the reception he received on the grid.

"It was quite phenomenal," Will said. "I thought we'd get a decent crowd, but it was bigger than I had anticipated. The reception the crowd gave me just blew me away. As for the result, it wasn't as good as I would have liked, but you can't complain, we got some good points today."

The 24 A1 Grand Prix teams now switch their attention to the increasingly familiar task of packing up and leaving Australian shores to head for the humid climes of Malaysia and the Sepang Circuit in just two weeks time.

One thing is for sure – A1 Grand Prix has arrived and left it's impression on Sydney, Australia and the 51,000 fans who celebrated Series Founder, Sheikh Maktoum's vision of cars, culture and competition.

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