Bahrain will begin F1 2010 in style after confirming plans to invite all 20 surviving F1 world champions to its event - the season opener - that takes place on March 14.

"There are 20 surviving world champions; they will all be here in Bahrain as part of the Grand Prix," BIC chief executive Martin Whitaker told Gulf Daily News. "This will be a truly special occasion, especially for all those who love F1 and who have been following the sport for many years."

Organisers of the event in Bahrain began the official 60-day countdown to the race yesterday [Tuesday].

The event will be a significant one in other ways too as it will not only mark the start of the 60th F1 season, but also the return of record-breaking multiple F1 world champion Michael Schumacher with Mercedes.

"Michael Schumacher is the biggest name in F1," added Whitaker. "He's a superstar, and he's going to be making his comeback here in Bahrain.

"All eyes around the world will be on us. We will definitely be doing something with Michael Schumacher in promoting our race.

"With all these attractions, Bahrain will be the focal point of the sporting world during the week of the Grand Prix. We are the first race of the season, and we have a lot to offer."

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