It may be struggling to agree on a site for a possible F1 return, but Mexico is up and running as an A1 Grand Prix team following last night's glittering launch at the Hipodromo de Las Americas.

Local dignitaries turned out in force to join series founder Sheikh Maktoum as the wraps were taken off the patriotically-liveried A1 Team Mexico car, which will do battle with at least 20 other national entries in the first 'World Cup of Motorsport, which kicks off September. Team president Juan Cortina introduced the race car and spoke of his enthusiasm for the A1 Grand Prix initiative.

"We are very excited that Mexico is going to have the opportunity to participate in the World Cup of Motorsport," he said, "Mexico has all the ingredients to be very competitive in this new and exciting series and we are very proud to be able to build this winning team."

No drivers have yet been confirmed for the single Mexican car - indeed, only Pakistan has revealed the identity of its driver - but Sheikh Maktoum is confident that the latest team to be unveiled will be competitive, given the number of talented Mexicans currently competing both at home and in America. The official unveiling concludes later today [Tuesday], when Champ Car driver Mario Dominguez drives the red, white and green car at the Autodromo 'Hermanos Rodriguez.

"I am immensely proud to attend the first launch of an A1 team from the Americas, and would like to take this opportunity to welcome them into the growing A1 family," the Sheikh said, "A1 Grand Prix is a truly global series reaching every continent in the world and, as our footprint continues to expand, I look forward to increasing our American contingent."

The Sheikh also took the opportunity presented by the launch to reveal that soccer star Ronaldo had joined the list of team owners, having obtained the series' Brazilian franchise.



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