2WD TO DRAW BEST OF EXISTING CLASSES, REVIVE GT OPTION
Monday 10th of February 2014
Outline plans to create a new support category for the FIA World Rallycross Championship have been approved by the FIA. The core idea is to create a two-wheel drive category that draws on the best of rallycross traditions, embraces modern thinking and protects the value of existing machinery.
There are currently two different two-wheel drive categories that feature in the FIA European Rallycross Championship – and which form part of the programme at European events of the FIA World Rallycross Championship – neither of which has consistently strong support across all territories. The aim is to create a single two-wheel drive category that is open to as wide a group of cars as possible. To do this the FIA has agreed to create a new two-wheel drive category that will combine the existing TouringCar and Super1600 saloon classes as well as being open to GT cars.
"The TouringCar and Super1600 categories are achieving the same end by different means, there is no great difference in cost or performance. At the same time the range of eligible cars is not as wide as it could be, which means some potential competitors are excluded from this level of competition," said Martin Anayi, Managing Director of Rallycross at IMG Motorsports, promoters of the FIA World and European championships. "The intention is to create a class that's open to the widest possible group of cars and drivers, and to reinvigorate two-wheel drive racing at the international level."
GT cars were an intrinsic part of rallycross from its inception until 1992 when regulations adopted Groups A and N as their base. Reintroducing GTs and admitting a wider range of saloons will provide competitors and fans with a diverse and exciting category. The current scale of minimum weight:engine capacity may be adjusted in order accommodate a wide range of different cars equitably.
"The impetus for change has been the need to create a category that is open to as many drivers as possible and which is consistently well supported. To achieve that we need to retain the current drivers and attract more, ensuring the cars that are in use now remain competitive and retain their value is as important as making the class as open as possible," said Anayi.
Detailed regulations for the category will be developed over the next few months with a view to the new category being introduced for the 2015 season.