Auto GP scraps Morocco season-opener due to "political situation"
- 3rd April 2015, 13:01 at 1:01 pm #295748
Auto GP’s planned season-opener supporting the World Touring Car Championship in Morocco will not go ahead “due to the difficult political situation that has been involving the northern African area in the last few months”, according to the championship.
The following statement was posted on their website on Wednesday (and doesn’t appear to be an April Fool’s joke):
The sixth edition of the Auto GP championship will kick-off in Budapest. The organization, led by Enzo Coloni, decided to cancel the opening round of 2015 which was originally scheduled in Marrakech, Morocco.
The decision was taken due to the difficult political situation that has been involving the northern African area in the last few months. As a consequence, the opening round will now be held at Budapest. Auto GP will be joining forces with the World Touring Car Championship at the Hungaroring on the 3rd of May. Both races will be live broadcasted by Eurosport.
Enzo Coloni: “Unfortunately, we were forced to opt out of the round scheduled for the 19th of April in Morocco. We did everything we possibly could to line-up at Marrakech but, in an effort to protect our teams and drivers, we decided to postpone the beginning of the season to Budapest. In the years spent in Morocco we always felt at home and we will definitely miss the warmth of the crowds there. We hope to be back next year”.
It’s not clear exactly what they’re suddenly concerned about. The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office last updated its advice on visiting Morroco over two months ago and refers only to a “general threat from terrorism” which is the same advice it gives about Italy and Spain. I visited Marrakech last year with my wife and we weren’t concerned about our safety at all.
Perhaps this has more to do with the fact only eight cars participated in its most recent pre-season test, and one of those has since switched to IndyCar.
The Auto GP season will now begin at the Hungaroring in May.3rd April 2015, 18:02 at 6:02 pm #295843
And now a press releasing announcing a new, three-car team for the season. Their name? Paulo Coloni.
Make of that what you will…
Auto GP is delighted to welcome a new team on-board for the 2015 season. Paolo Coloni Racing will make their debut in the 2015 Auto GP season with the goal of fielding three cars. The team benefits from the 30-year experience of Paolo Coloni in motorsports as a driver and team manager, including the success achieved during the 2011 GP2 Season by Scuderia Coloni with Luca Filippi.
Paolo Coloni “I’m happy and proud to be back managing my own racing team after a two-year break. Auto GP is a very interesting championship considering the level of the teams involved. Virtuosi Racing manages the Russian Time operation in the GP2 Series, and Super Nova is committed to the Formula E series together with Team Trulli. As Paolo Coloni Racing we will have to work hard to hit the top straight away. We will announce the deals with a main sponsor and with the drivers shortly”.
Coloni, of course, departed GP2 abruptly and very much under a cloud in 2012 due to “a disagreement between Coloni Motorsport and GP2 Organisation”.4th April 2015, 2:36 at 2:36 am #295894wsrgoParticipant
It’s clear that Auto GP have steered clear of participating in the first round because despite tying up with FA1, they haven’t got enough entrants yet.
As for the second piece of news, can you give me the link? It’s not surprising though, as the series is run by his father, Enzo Coloni.4th April 2015, 2:55 at 2:55 am #295895AnonymousInactive
Right here (in Italian): http://www.autogp.net/newssingola2.asp?c=2244th April 2015, 11:00 at 11:00 am #295900
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