With more and more designs being made of Formula 1 cars under the 2017 rules, I can’t help but feel a little nostalgic. Every time I see a side on drawing or rendering, or more specifically, the slanted 2017 rear wings, I get flashbacks. My mind jumps back a decade, to a far simpler time. A time when nations could battle it out on track. A1GP – the World Cup of Motorsport.
This series was an awesome idea. Pitting country against country in a spec open wheel series. It was great while it lasted with fun racing and some decent drivers involved, all of which had to be of the same nationality as the country they represented, which I always thought to be an important rule.
Despite some famous national colours being proudly displayed over the series’ four year history, not many of the liveries were terribly memorable. One of the exceptions, for me, was Team Malaysia.
Team Malaysia didn’t fair too badly in A1GP, finishing with a championship best result of 5th, and racking up five wins along the way. Four of those wins were taken by Yoong, the other one by Fairuz Fauzy.
It was through A1GP that I discovered that Malaysia’s national sporting colour is yellow, and it translates well onto a racing car. Me paying special attention to this car was probably due to former F1 driver Alex Yoong being at the wheel.
This design follows my #1 and #2 rules – choose the right colours, and respect the natural lines of the car. While it may seem that the teams had no choice in the colours they raced in due to national colours being used, picking the right shade was completely their decision and an important one. Team Malaysia chose well and had a lovely bold yellow as the majority colour on the car.
Supporting this yellow was largely white, which as far as my research tells me is unusual. Generally for Malaysian national sports teams, yellow is accompanied by black, and often in the style of tiger stripes, which is Malaysia’s national animal. This decision to go with white could have been just to show of the sponsors better, but either way, I do like the combination.
Team Malaysia kept the same design for the majority of A1GP’s lifespan, slightly changing with the new car in 2008, but the original design was lovely. With yellow as the main colour, the entire engine cover was white, as were the front wing end plates and the rear wing. The main design elements, however, were the thin black stripes that ran along the sides. One of these stripes ran the length of the car, thinning to a point at the nose and exhaust. The other line was along the top edge of the sidepod, contouring it nicely.
Like I mentioned earlier, what I love most about these lines is that they run along the natural curves and edges of the car, framing it nicely. Can’t really go long utilising rule #2. There is also black on the front wing supports and the wing itself, as well as the mirrors.
A memorable livery that looked great from every angle. Maybe (and hopefully) one day we’ll see a similar championship pop up. ROC doesn’t quite cut it for me!