The i1 Super Series on Monday announced a star-studded line-up that included former Formula One world champion Jacques Villeneuve, grand prix winners like Heinz-Herald Frentzen, Ferrari test driver Giancarlo Fisichella and Indians like Karun Chandhok and Armaan Ebrahim.
The series will also feature two female drivers — Britain’s Pippa Mann, who competes in the IndyCar series, and Switzerland’s Cyndie Allemann.
The city franchise teams include Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chandigarh, Pune, Kolkata and Jaipur or Goa. “Of the lot, the owners for Kolkata, Pune, Chandigarh and Jaipur/Goa, are yet to be finalised,” said Darshan M, CEO of Machdar Motorsports that will be in-charge of running the series. Darshan revealed that former India cricket captain, Sourav Ganguly, had shown interest. “We will know in due course,” he added.
The drivers will get their first feel of the Radical SR3 cars on Tuesday when an official two-hour test session is scheduled.
The series will be broadcast live on Ten Sports and will have a prize-money of R10.5 crore. The series’ five rounds of two races each will run in Bahrain (Feb 4), Qatar (Feb 11), Delhi (Feb 26) and Abu Dhabi (Mar 10) after the opening round in Malaysia (Jan 22). Each team will be required to have one Indian driver, one Indian international (including drivers of Indian origin) and one international driver. Two drivers will take part on a race weekend.
The series will feature young Indian drivers like Aditya Patel, defending Volkswagen Polo R Cup champion Vishnu Prasad and Ameya Walavalkar. Other drivers include Malaysia’s Alex Yoong, Vitantonio Liuzzi and former Ferrari and Sauber driver Mika Salo. Former A1 GP champion Neel Jani is also signed up.
With inputs from agencies
The writer’s trip has been sponsored by Machdar Motorsports