2008 Race of Champions - Click above for a hi-res gallery
Still think of the Race of Champions as an elitist European event? Think again. Organizers have announced that that the annual face-off is scheduled to head to China this year.
The Race of Champions, for those unfamiliar, is a year-end event in which the top drivers from various motorsport disciplines – including F1, rally, touring cars, Le Mans...even motorbikes, drifting or the occasional NASCAR pretty-boy – compete against each other in a series of heats on varied machinery around a dedicated track built inside a major sports arena. The event crowns two winners: the solo Champion of Champions, and the Nations Cup in which drivers pair up to represent their home countries. After a decade in the Canary Islands, the race was held for three consecutive seasons at the Stade de France before moving to Wembley Stadium for the past two years, but a new arrangement will see this year's race held in Beijing at the Bird's Nest stadium built for last year's Olympic games. Previous champions have been predominantly rally drivers (including three titles for Sebastien Loeb and two for Mattias Ekstrom), while Germany's contingent of Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel have taken the national honors. Who will be crowned champion this year? Tune in on November 3-4, only two days after the Formula One season wraps up in Abu Dhabi (assuming they can get the Yas Island circuit ready in time) to find out.