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To paraphrase the great Mark Twain, rumors of A1GP's death been greatly exaggerated. Or at least that's the way it appeared a couple of weeks ago when the self-styled World Cup of Motorsport announced a 19-strong entry list for its season opener at Surfers Paradise on Australia's Gold Coast, scheduled for October 25.

The international open-wheel racing series has been teetering on the brink of collapse for several months now. The spec racer developed for the series by Ferrari had to go back to the drawing board several times, with the FIA most recently deeming the cars unfit to race and reportedly ordering significant modifications that series organizers were incapable of carrying out before the opening round of the 2009-10 season.

Technical issues aside, however, A1GP appears to be in serious financial difficulties. Following earlier reports that the series had gone into bankruptcy, the latest word is that the organizers owe money all over, now resulting in the logistics company contracted to ship the cars to races around the world holding the cars as ransom for payment, while Ferrari has reportedly demanded the series return the engines it ordered due to lack of payment. Whatever the problem, A1GP has had to cancel the race in Surfers Paradise, but insists that the remainder of the off-season season is still a go. We'll just have to sit tight and see if they can sort out their financial and technical problems before they have to cancel the second round in China, currently scheduled for November 15.

[Source: Autosport and paultan.org]

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