Arab world could host new F1 team with 50/50 driver gender parity

Arab world could host new F1 team with 50/50 driver gender parity
The Gulf region could be the home of a new F1 team, with speculation that Saudi Arabia will play host.
2 min read
29 March, 2023
Saudi Arabia already hosts a Grand Prix in Jeddah [Getty]

The Arab world could be home to a new 'gender-equal' Formula 1 team, with Saudi Arabia tipped as the eventual host, according to motorsports media.

Scottish businessman Craig Pollock said he will launch Formula Equal - with 50/50 parity between men and women drivers - by 2026 and it will be the first F1 team to be based "truly outside Europe".

Although Pollock remains tightlipped about where the team will be based, he did say it will be in the Gulf.

 "We are in intense discussions with I would just say a Gulf area country," he told CNN.

"I'm not really in the position to talk about that and be fully open about it at this present time - that will come out in the very near future. And I just hope it's going to work because it does take a lot of money.

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"This has to be built from the bottom up in a Gulf state and this is what we are aiming to do. This is a long-term project - this is not short-term."

Prince Khalid bin Al-Faisal, president of the Saudi Motorsport Federation, also refused to confirm whether the team would be based in the kingdom, but it comes amid a push to make the Gulf region a hub for Formula 1.

There will be four Grand Prix races held in the Gulf region this season - Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE.

The Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in Jeddah is the most recent of these, with Sergio Pérez of Red Bull Racing-Honda winning this year's race.

Saudi Arabia, like other countries in the Gulf, has looked to use major sporting events to boost its international profile and boost entertainment options.

Along with the Grand Prix in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia also hosts WWE tournaments, Formula E, the Dakar Rally, and other major sporting events.