A1GP could lose sponsors

Powerful sponsors may pull-out of the SuperGP next year if an international open-wheeler event is not included in the race calendar. A push has been started by senior political, V8 Supercars and corporate figures to target a new race concept, that would incorporate a Formula 3 event. The Macau Grand Prix model has been suggested as an ideal solution for a future Gold Coast race weekend.

The showcase event, which is sanctioned by the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile, is run on a street circuit in late November.

Sources have told The Bulletin that there may be scope to host a similar invitational Formula 3 race in Surfers Paradise. [Editor's Note: Are they really serious? Scary.]

Triple Eight co-owner Roland Dane said race organizers should approach the FIA to suggest a third race event as part of the international component, which already includes the Macau race and a race in South Korea.

"The current series attracts the top teams from Europe and Japan to compete," said Mr. Dane, who this month won a position on the V8 Supercars Board.

"I believe there could be scope to expand the series and include the Gold Coast."

Conrad Jupiters managing director Stuart Wing said future events required an international component.

Mr. Wing said the additional element would need to work alongside the V8 Supercars.

"It adds a little pizzazz and international flavor into the weekend," said Mr. Wing.

"The uncertainty surrounding this year's event did not help numbers. There was a significant drop in business across the board but there are reasons for that."

Mr. Wing said he would back a Formula 3 race if it included an international flavor.

A Gold Coast Motor Events source told The Bulletin that Formula 3 cars could be easily accommodated on the Surfers Paradise track.

"They've been here before. There are no problems with them in terms of the design of the track. The Australian Formula 3 series has been here before," he said.

State Opposition leader John-Paul Langbroek said the race weekend required an "extra dimension" Goldcoast.com.au

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