When the A1GP World Cup of Motorsports started back in 2005, some saw it as a challenger to Formula One. But while the nation-based formula was creative, it stood little chance of posing any serious competition to F1 with all its decades of history, billions of dollars and millions of fans worldwide. The start-up open-wheel racing series, however, has managed to carve out a niche for itself as an additional feeder series, providing another stepping stone from which F1 can draw talent in addition to other second-tier racing formulae like F3, GP2 and Champ/Indy (at least, before the split).
In an interview with Italian sports journal Gazzetta dello Sport, A1GP chairman Tony Teixeira made a point of thanking his F1 counterpart Bernie Ecclestone, whom Teixeira credits with helping to broker the deal with Ferrari by which the Scuderia will design the cars and supply the engines for the entire series starting with the 2008-2009 season. (A1GP runs on the off-season in order to attract drivers and fans when other series are on break.)
Teixeira, who has also been tipped to be considering the purchase of an F1 team, also noted that he approached Ferrari for the mutually-beneficial deal. Ain't it swell when everyone plays nice together?