The 53rd Macau Grand Prix will be held from November 16th to 19th 2006, and preparations by the Macau Grand Prix Committee for ticketing, promotions, and logistical works are already well under way. Tickets are now on sale priced from MOP50.00 for a seat at the notorious Lisboa Bend during practice, to MOP750.00 for a two-day Grand Stand race package. Tickets can be purchased from the Macau Grand Prix Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org (full details and prices at www.macau.grandprix.gov.mo). The Committee has already received an unprecedented number of sponsorship enquiries this year. Title sponsorship of the races will be confirmed shortly, as well as reservations for all hospitality areas. In 2005, the Grand Prix added another string to its already-impressive bow, with the inclusion of the final two rounds of the inaugural FIA World Touring Car Championship in the line up which also included the prestigious FIA Intercontinental Cup, the unofficial world cup of the category, and the Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix. In March this year the Macau Grand Prix was included in UK-based leading motorsport magazine Autosport’s list of “Twenty of the top motorsport events you really shouldn’t miss in 2006”, describing the event as “legendary”. With two official FIA events, plus a motorcycle Grand Prix on the same programme, the 52nd Macau Grand Prix exceeded all expectations, and organisers are working hard to once again stage the three headline show-stoppers plus a wide variety of high-quality support races. Mr. João Manuel Costa Antunes, Co-Ordinator of the Macau Grand Prix Committee emphasised that the success of the event depends on the efforts of the Committee in proactively working with every sector of Macau society to ensure each year is an improvement on the last. Mr. Antunes added that because international motorsport is a global sport which is developing quickly, every effort is made to ensure that the Macau Grand Prix keeps pace with this development, and that Macau continues to be promoted as a vibrant tourist destination across the globe through the sport. This year Macau will celebrate the 40th running of its Motorcycle Grand Prix, and a programme of exciting activities is planned. Marshal training is crucial on a street circuit such as Macau’s Guia, and a comprehensive programme which includes theory and practical instruction plus written tests, will be held from April to June by the China-Macau Autosports Club (ACMC) and the Macau Grand Prix Committee. The training is for Observers, Flag, Track, Pit, Paddock and Paddle Marshals, and Track Clearers. The Macau Grand Prix has earned a well-deserved reputation for being the ultimate testing ground for drivers, particularly those on their way to the pinnacle of international motorsport - Formula One. Motor racing “royalty” who have raced on the Guia Circuit include 18 of the 22 current Formula 1 drivers, plus 10 of the 16 F1 test drivers waiting in the wings. With its history of more than half a Century, Macau is now playing host to the next generation of famous names and the grid has recently seen the likes of exciting F1 debutante Nico Rosberg, Nelson Piquet Junior, and Christian Jones, all of whom competed in the 50th Macau Grand Prix, following in the footsteps of their famous fathers before them. Bruno Senna, nephew of the late, great Ayrton winner of the first ever Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix in 1983, competed in the same event last year. The FIA World Touring Car Championship embarked upon its second season last weekend, and 20 rounds are on the calendar for 2006, with Macau again hosting the grand finale as part of the Grand Prix weekend. Over the four-day 53rd Macau Grand Prix, practice and qualifying sessions will take place on November 16th and 17th (Thursday and Friday), with the races on November 18th and 19th (Saturday and Sunday).