BRI­TISH RACE OR­GAN­IS­ERS WANT FEWER CLASHES Frus­tra­tion as WEC, BTCC and Bri­tish GT all ran to­gether

Motor Sport News - - Racing News - By Rob Lad­brook Photos: Jakob Ebrey, Gary Hawkins

Or­gan­is­ers of Bri­tain’s ma­jor cham­pi­onships have called for more co­or­di­na­tion when sched­ul­ing fix­tures, fol­low­ing last week­end’s con­gested pro­gramme of events.

Last week­end proved to be one of the busiest Bri­tish mo­tor­sport week­ends in re­cent years, with the Bri­tish Tour­ing Car Cham­pi­onship rac­ing at Doning­ton Park, Bri­tish GT and BRDC For­mula 3 at Brands Hatch, as well as the UK’S FIA World En­durance Cham­pi­onship round at Sil­ver­stone. The His­toric Sports Car Club also held its grandee 50th an­niver­sary meet­ing at Cas­tle Combe.

The sched­ule proved a chal­lenge, stretch­ing re­sources in terms of of­fi­cials and vol­un­teers, such as mar­shals.

Alan Gow, head of BTCC or­gan­iser TOCA, said other cham­pi­onships should work harder to sched­ule dates ear­lier to avoid sim­i­lar clashes in the fu­ture.

Gow said: “We did our [BTCC] cal­en­dar last July. If other cham­pi­onships could be as ef­fi­cient, we wouldn’t have th­ese clashes. FIA se­ries like the WEC put their cal­en­dars out in De­cem­ber [to co­in­cide with the World Mo­tor Sports Coun­cil meet­ing]. I can un­der­stand the frus­tra­tion from fans.”

Doning­ton Park man­ager Christo­pher Tate added: “One of the ex­tra­or­di­nary fea­tures about in­ter­na­tional mo­tor­sport at the very top level is that we are in dan­ger of look­ing am­a­teur­ish com­pared to other sports. The Rugby World Cup Fi­nal, the Olympic Games – and a whole se­ries of other ma­jor sport­ing events are an­nounced at least two years in ad­vance.

“In my opin­ion it re­mains a scan­dal that the in­ter­na­tional gov­ern­ing body is un­able, be­cause of the de­lays in fix­ing the F1 cal­en­dar, to an­nounce the dates for all of its other se­ries un­til the De­cem­ber World Coun­cil meet­ing of the FIA.

“If we were in any other country apart from the UK, then it would not be pos­si­ble to hold three ma­jor race meet­ings across the country’s lead­ing cir­cuits on the same week­end. There wouldn’t be suf­fi­cient mar­shals and medics. We are for­tu­nate we have that large army of vol­un­teers.”

Bri­tish GT man­ager Ben­jamin Franasso­vici said Bri­tish GT’S sched­ule had to fit around SRO’S Euro­pean classes, like the Blanc­pain GT Se­ries: “We don’t want clashes, par­tic­u­larly not with BTCC and WEC, so to have all three on one week­end is bad. There wasn’t much we could do this year. There are only four dates on the Brands GP cir­cuit so you take what you can get. The is­sue is there’s too much rac­ing go­ing on every­where now, but then again if there was less, peo­ple would com­plain.” Ad­di­tional re­port­ing by Matt James.

Bri­tish GT was at Brands Hatch Tate wants date com­mu­ni­ca­tion

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