SRO to launch World Challenge in 2019 to link three continental series

The Stephane Ratel Organisation will link its three continental sprint series into an 18-round global championship in 2019 under the Blancpain GT World Challenge banner

SRO to launch World Challenge in 2019 to link three continental series

The series will be made up of the rounds of what are currently called the Blancpain GT Series Sprint Cup in Europe, the Blancpain GT Series Asia and the Pirelli World Challenge in North America.

They will all be known as the Blancpain GT World Challenge, but with Europe, Asia and America suffixes.

Manufacturers will be able to compete for an overall World Challenge title covering the five events in Europe, the six in Asia and seven in North America.

They will have to nominate four-driver teams on each continent, with one each from the platinum, gold, silver and bronze categories.

SRO boss Stephane Ratel described the World Challenge as the customer equivalent of the Intercontinental GT Challenge, which links the major GT3 enduros around the globe.

"The IGTC is about manufacturer entries, but the World Challenge is a trophy for the manufacturers that's about customer racing around the world," he said.

"I have spoken to our manufacturers and they like the idea.

"We are not dreaming about having 10 manufacturers initially, but if we have three manufacturers signing up for the World Challenge next year we will be happy."

Points will be scored by each of the nominated drivers in the class of the series in which they are competing, multiplied by the number of starters.

"It is logical if a driver wins a three-car class in Asia that they score fewer points than someone winning the pro category in front of 15 cars in Europe," he explained.

The World Challenge Europe will continue to be linked to what will remain known as the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup and overall titles will be awarded at the end of the season.

The entry requirement for manufacturers competing in the pro class of the BGTS Endurance Cup, which includes the Spa 24 Hours, will be tightened up: they will either have to additionally enter the World Challenge Europe or the full IGTC.

The World Challenge America will have a new 90-minute two-driver format in 2019.

shares
comments
Porsche launches new 935-styled GT car based on the 911

Previous article

Porsche launches new 935-styled GT car based on the 911

Next article

Black Falcon Mercedes drivers win '18 Blancpain Endurance Cup title

Black Falcon Mercedes drivers win '18 Blancpain Endurance Cup title
Load comments

About this article

Series GT
Author Gary Watkins
How McLaren’s GT3 ‘single-seater’ defies expectations Plus

How McLaren’s GT3 ‘single-seater’ defies expectations

Time in a thoroughbred racer leaves you searching for time in yourself, especially when the rewards for total commitment are so high, as our man discovered at Snetterton

GT
Apr 28, 2021
How Ferrari's F1 protege became a Mercedes GT prodigy Plus

How Ferrari's F1 protege became a Mercedes GT prodigy

Raffaele Marciello once appeared to be Ferrari’s next Italian F1 star, but is now under the pay of its German arch-rival in GTs – and he’s very happy with his life

GT
Apr 8, 2021
Why GTE's future is a conundrum with no easy answers Plus

Why GTE's future is a conundrum with no easy answers

The convergence between the World Endurance Championship and IMSA over LMDh regulations offers a bright future for sportscar racing, but the imminent demise of IMSA's GT Le Mans class creates wider issues to which no catch-all solution exists

GT
Feb 3, 2021
How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends Plus

How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends

Victory at last year's Spa 24 Hours meant Nick Tandy had completed the unofficial sextuple crown of the world's six biggest endurance races, becoming the first Briton to do so. Ahead of his fresh start with Corvette Racing, he explains how he did it

GT
Jan 23, 2021
Why a lost F1 hope is still in demand aged 65 Plus

Why a lost F1 hope is still in demand aged 65

There's a saying among retired folk that life begins at 60, but endurance specialist Alain Ferte has never used the 'R' word. Some 40 years since his crowning glory in F3, he's still a driver in demand and gunning for more 24-hour racing success this weekend

GT
Jan 15, 2021
How a BTCC veteran conquered the summit in British GT Plus

How a BTCC veteran conquered the summit in British GT

After two decades in touring cars, Rob Collard had an uphill battle to unlearn the tools needed to be quick in tin-tops and understand how to hustle a GT3 car. But he did so with aplomb to prevail alongside Sandy Mitchell amid a challenging year for the series

GT
Dec 17, 2020
The high-power solution to counter a dying breed Plus

The high-power solution to counter a dying breed

SRO boss Stephane Ratel was worried about the disappearance of the amateur - or 'gentleman' - drivers who used to be the bedrock of GT3. So he invented a new category that brings back a familiar name from the past

GT
Dec 6, 2020
The Dutch oddity that was too niche for its own good Plus

The Dutch oddity that was too niche for its own good

Despite (briefly) having its own F1 arm, Spyker's period in international sportscar racing was spent mostly propping up the grid. Its C8 Laviolette GT2-R stands as one of the last underfunded factory GT efforts that never got a helping hand from BOP

GT
May 21, 2020