Olivier Panis has joined A1 Team France's effort to reclaim the A1 Grand Prix World Cup of Motorsport crown, adding experience to the youthful line-up being fielded by Jean-Paul Driot's DAMS operation.

The former F1 racewinner, who retired from the top flight at the end of 2005, will perform an advisory role, working directly alongside Driot at several races. He will also be something of a mentor to drivers Loic Duval - who will take on race duties this season - and Nicolas Prost, who joins the team as nominated rookie.

"It is great to have someone like Oliver joining the team," general manager Eric Boullier said, "I know his expertise and knowledge can play a vital role in helping A1 Team France recapture the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport title."

The team confirmed its driver line-up at a special launch at the Hotel de Crillon on Place de la Concorde in Paris, revealing that Duval will return to the line-up as main driver. The 25-year old was 'capped' eight times for his country last season, impressing from his race debut at Taupo in New Zealand, where he took a brace of second places.

Duval joins Prost, the son of four-time Formula One world champion Alain, who was confirmed as the team's official rookie driver last month.

"It is going to be a close season," Boullier added, "but I'm excited about the combination of Loic and Nicolas. We are aiming and high and will try and recapture the A1GP title for France."

 

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