ELMS cancels remaining rounds of 2012 season, teams invited to Petit Le Mans
|By Matt Beer||Friday, July 20th 2012, 16:39 GMT|
The remaining scheduled rounds of the 2012 European Le Mans Series have been cancelled, with the American Le Mans Series' Petit Le Mans finale counting for points for ELMS teams instead.
The ELMS had been scheduled to continue at Brno in the Czech Republic in September and Portugal's Algarve track at the start of November. But organisers have now announced that both races will be called off, with ELMS competitors instead invited to Road Atlanta for Petit on 17-20 October, when double points will be available.
This year the ELMS had banned LMP1 cars to focus on LMP2s, but although this division had delivered a competitive field, the LMPC and GTE classes had become increasingly weak.
In last weekend's Donington Park round, the nine LMP2 cars were joined by just one LMPC car and three GTs, while the intended Zolder event in April had already been cancelled due to a low entry.
A statement from the organisers said the move was "the result of the current economic climate and a very competitive GT market with numerous championships that have led to the dispersal of cars of this type in Europe."
The statement added that the 2012 changes did not mean the end of the ELMS: "The organisers of the European Le Mans Series are working flat out on the future of the series, which is one of the essential competitions for training teams and drivers for the top level of endurance racing, the FIA World Endurance Championship and the Le Mans 24 Hours. This work will result in a proposal for the coming seasons and will be announced in September."
TDS drivers Pierre Thiriet and Mathias Beche lead the ELMS standings after the two rounds that took place at Paul Ricard and Donington.