In 2009, the Gold Coast street race was to be transformed from the domain of IndyCar to the fledgling A1 Grand Prix World Cup of Motorsport. Surfers Paradise was due to become the series’ showpiece.
A few months out from the Gold Coast’s scheduled race, questions about the series’ financial viability became a roar within motor racing circles. BAM Group passed on this intelligence to the Queensland Government, however A1 bosses internationally and locally insisted the event would go ahead.
Then, just six days before the event, A1GP notified the Queensland Government that it would not be coming to Australia. Having warned the Government of this potential outcome months prior, BAM Media was charged with managing the fallout from the series’ collapse, both locally and internationally.
BAM Media boss, Brett Murray, wrote a personal cheque to have a number of historic Australian touring car prepared for a special demonstration at the event and organised for their original drivers to be present – for many, it was the first time they had driven those cars since their careers ended.
The BAM Media team worked around the clock for five days to devise and implement the amended V8 Supercars-led program, whilst managing the A1GP collapse. The result was an event that maintained much of the atmosphere that the IndyCar events had generated around the Gold Coast. This event was the genesis for the international co-driver event that eventuated the following year.
In the subsequent Parliamentary enquiry around the event, Queensland Sport Minister at the time, Phil Reeves officially praised the efforts of Murray and BAM Media on Hansard for their role in saving the event.