ELMS forced to cancel Zolder round due to a lack of entries
|By Simon Strang
||Monday, April 2nd 2012, 10:40 GMT
A lack of entries has forced the organisers of the European Le Mans Series to cancel the second round of the championship, which was to be held at Zolder on May 20.
Just 21 cars took part in the opening race at Paul Ricard last weekend and only 19 entries were registered for the Belgian race.
Following a meeting between ELMS promoter Patrick Peter, ACO vice president Pierre Fillon, FIM WEC general manager Gerard Neveu and ACO sports director Vincent Beaumesnil (ACO Sports Director) at Ricard, and in consultation with the teams, it was decided to write off the event.
In a press release Peter cited the reason for the cancellation as a chance to regroup and allow time to gain the targeted minimum of 25 cars for the British round of the now-four-race series at Donington Park on July 15.
"This decision, the outcome of a long discussion, was taken because the number of entrants (19) for the Belgian round was judged to be insufficient to ensure that the race unfolded in the best possible manner to ensure media fallout worthy of a six-hour event," the release stated.
"The various partners involved in the European Le Mans Series have given themselves the time to assemble a field of 25 cars minimum for Donington.
"To achieve this objective, discussions have begun between the different partners to find solutions to attract more entrants for the various categories, in particular GTE, FLM and GTC.
"For the latter widening the range of eligible cars is being studied, and will be confirmed as soon as possible according to the results of the technical assessment carried out by the ACO."
The ELMS and American Le Mans Series make up for 25 of the 55 Le Mans 24 Hours entries, and Fillon says the aim for the European Series, which does not run LMP1 prototypes, is to have 35 cars on the grid in 2013.
The release also stated that, subject to an FIA waiver, a certain number of ELMS teams may be accepted for the Spa-Francorchamps round of the WEC on May 6.