Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe
BTCC Brands Hatch Grand Prix

BTCC introduces IndyCar-style qualifying format

The British Touring Car Championship has introduced a new IndyCar-style qualifying format for the 2024 season.

Daniel Rowbottom, NAPA Racing UK Ford Focus ST

Competitors are to take part in a three-stage qualifying system, culminating in a six-car, 10-minute shootout for pole position named ‘Quick Six’.

The field will be split into two groups for a pair of 10-minute qualifying sessions, with the fastest six from each group progressing to the second segment, which also lasts for 10 minutes. The top six from this group will then fight out the ‘Quick Six’.

As IndyCar does on road and street tracks, the BTCC will allocate drivers into their groups based on alternate positions from the second free practice session – first, third, fifth etc will run in one group; second, fourth, sixth etc in another.

This is intended to increase interest in FP2, with it not only having a bearing on the competitive element to the weekend but also to increase the importance of qualifying simulations.

The traditional BTCC qualifying session of 30 minutes has meant that teams have had the luxury of using the early stages to get a read on set-up, meaning they can focus on race distance runs during free practice.

Even with the addition at some events in recent seasons of a top-10 Q2 shootout, the initial Q1 phase has still lasted for half an hour.

Ashley Sutton, NAPA Racing UK Ford Focus ST

Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images

Ashley Sutton, NAPA Racing UK Ford Focus ST

“We’re always looking to bring further energy to the championship, but it’s also important that the competitive integrity remains,” said BTCC chief Alan Gow.

“I believe our new ‘Quick Six’ format will bring a heightened blend of competitiveness and intensity to BTCC qualifying.

“As well, it helps the drivers by reducing the amount of cars on track during all three of the qualifying segments.

“I’ve long admired the way IndyCar use this system for its road courses – it’s ideal for the BTCC and in keeping with our policy of providing short, sharp and intense action.

“The pressure will certainly be on the teams and drivers, more than ever before, to quickly ‘nail’ their qualifying laps in each short segment.”

The BTCC statement said that the new system was welcomed by the teams and drivers and endorsed ‘during the scheduled recent end of season teams meeting’.

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Friday favourite: The video game icon that lived up to expectations
Next article BTCC doubles hybrid power boost for 2024 season

Top Comments

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe