- GT2 and GT3 set for standalone series in GT Sports Club Europe
- New GT4 European Final confirmed for Imola
- 2020 GT World Challenge takes shape
Stephane Ratel has provided further detail on SRO Motorsports Group's 2020 plans ahead of this weekend's season-ending Blancpain GT Series event at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
Once the European campaign has concluded attention will quickly turn to the United States, with the annual SRO Awards set to take place in Las Vegas following the season-ending Blancpain GT World Challenge America round (19-20 October). This will see the champions of 2019 crowned during a gala reception and dinner at the world-famous Bellagio Hotel, with the venue's Grand Ballroom staging the ceremony.
On 1-3 November, the inaugural FIA Motorsport Games will bring together a diverse set of racers from across the globe to compete for national glory. Hosted by Rome and with the nearby Vallelunga Circuit staging the on-track action, this new multi-disciplinary contest features categories for GT, Touring Car, Formula 4, Drifting, Karting Slalom and Digital competitors. Gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded to the top-three finishers in each event, culminating in the most successful nation being awarded the inaugural FIA Motorsport Games trophy during the closing ceremony in Rome.
Later in the month, the Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli season will conclude with the much-anticipated Kyalami 9 Hour. Reviving an event that traces its history back more than half a century, the long-distance contest will see the championship decided by a fifth race on as many continents. There has been significant interest in the trip to South Africa, with a 30-car field comprising nine manufacturers already committed.
GT2 set for full debut in standalone GT Sports Club Europe
Concerning 2020 and beyond, the GT2 programme continues to make progress. The concept made its track debut in support of this year's Total 24 Hours of Spa, when the Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport tackled a pair of one-make races. A further step forward will be taken at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya when the Audi R8 LMS GT2 contests the weekend's Blancpain GT Sports Club season finale.
As previously stated, GT Sports Club will represent the starting point for the GT2 concept. Following competitor feedback, it has been decided that the two categories will compete separately in 2020, with GT3 Sports Club Europe contesting a five-round championship beginning at Monza (18-19 April) and concluding at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya (10-11 October). GT2 Sports Club Europe will also play out over five events, with the season opening at an official test day in Spa (15 July) and closing at Imola (31 October-1 November). The later launch will allow the pool of GT2 owners to expand, ensuring a healthy field for the inaugural event.
Further details revealed for 2020 GT World Challenge
2020 will represent the second season for the global GT World Challenge format, with a total of 23 non-clashing events set to play out across Europe, North America and Asia. These will include both sprint endurance racing on each continent, while a manufacturers' title will once again awarded to the top-performer across these three series.
In an adjustment to the scoring system, points will be awarded to the best-finishing car per brand in each class. The allocation will differ depending on the event format, ranging from 25 for sprint races to 100 at the Total Spa 24 Hours. The number of points will be multiplied by the amount of cars competing in each class to give the final total.
Next season's GT World Challenge Europe calendar remains unchanged from the version revealed at this year's Total 24 Hours of Spa and is split evenly between the Endurance Cup and Sprint Cup. The later series will undergo a minor format revision to create a more balanced race meeting, with qualifying one and race one staged on Saturday and the same programme repeated on Sunday. This will apply to four of the five rounds, the exception being the two-day Brands Hatch event.
GT4 European Final to bring together international racers at Imola
The calendars for the GT4 European Series, Championnat de France FFSA GT/GT4 France and British GT have also been confirmed. What's more, a GT4 European Final will be staged on 31 October-1 November, bringing together a selection of GT4 cars from the series either directly promoted by SRO or organised through franchise agreements around the world. The event will take place at Imola, alongside GT2 Sports Club Europe.
This expanded global calendar promises an exciting 2020 season as SRO Motorsports Group seeks to consolidate its position as the global leader in GT racing.