20 Dhu al-Qi'dah 1444 - 9 June 2023
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Eye of Riyadh
Tourism & Hospitality | Thursday 9 March, 2023 1:51 pm |

SAUDIA and the Saudi Motorsport Company celebrate the premiere of the film "Return of a Winner”

SAUDIA, the national flag carrier of Saudi Arabia, and the Saudi Motorsport Company (SMC) have hosted the premiere of the film "Return of a Winner" at the Prince Sultan Aviation Academy in Jeddah.


 The film documents the restoration of the iconic Williams FW07 car, which won the 1980 Formula 1 World Championship in the hands of Australian Alan Jones. The premiere took place in the presence of His Royal Highness Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al-Abdullah Al-Faisal, Chairman of the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation and the Saudi Motorsport Company, and His Excellency the Director General of SAUDIA Group Engr. Ibrahim Al-Omar. 


 Produced across 2021 & 2022, the 35-minute film tells the story of restoring the Williams FW07 car after more than 40 years. The British engineering and restoration company MEM, led by Chris Mellors, accepted the challenge to restore the car and managed the feat within six weeks, despite numerous technical difficulties. His Royal Highness Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, Minister of Sports, had the opportunity to drive the car on the Jeddah Corniche Circuit during the inaugural Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in December, 2021 alongside former World Champions Damon Hill and Emerson Fittipaldi. The car was also used by Formula 1 to complete a solo lap of the circuit ahead of the Formula 1 Grand Prix in the hands of Damon Hill as a mark of respect to the Williams team owner Sir Frank Williams who died in the week of the race.




Mr. Khaled Tash, SAUDIA Group Chief Marketing Officer, said: “The film will be provided for SAUDIA guests on the In-Flight Entertainment systems on SAUDIA’s flights. SAUDIA guests from all over the world will be able to watch the documentary during their flights. SAUDIA partners many local and international sporting events, as the Kingdom has been hosting many of these competitions, from the early beginnings of the famous Williams team sponsorship. We are excited that the pace of SAUDIA’s contribution has increased on many occasions as the official carrier.”


His Royal Highness Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al-Abdullah Al-Faisal, Chairman of the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation and the Saudi Motorsport Company, also commented: “It was a great honour to be present at tonight’s screening to watch the story of this remarkable car and the painstaking effort that went into reconstructing it in time for our first ever Formula 1 race in 2021. What is clear is that in Saudi Arabia our passion for motorsport runs deep and stretches back decades. The success of our motorsport past is one of the main factors inspiring our dreams for the future, dreams that are becoming a reality year on year. Congratulations to all involved in this documentary.”


SAUDIA has participated in many major sporting events. In addition to sponsoring the Williams team from 1977 to 1984, it has also been a sponsor of the Formula E Diriyah race since 2019, the Official Airline Partner of the World Heavyweight Championship “Rage on the Red Sea” and is the Official Carrier and Platinum Partner of the world’s richest horse race, the Saudi Cup.


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