Driver change limit imposed and TC2T class officially dropped for 2015
The sporting regulations for the 2015 FIA World Touring Car Championship have been published and the key changes are the as-expected removal of the TC2T class for older Super 2000 cars, and a limit on the number of driver changes for full season entrants.
The new regulations remove the TC2T class, which was contested last season by just Liqui Moly Team Engstler and Campos Racing for the full year, using pre-2014 Super 2000 cars, with the Championship now mainly reserved for the current generation of Super 2000 cars, dubbed as TC1.
The regulations remain open to allow TCN (national) touring cars to compete with the approval of the Touring Car Committee. The last such entrant under these rules was effectively Yukinori Taniguchi at the Hungaroring last season, driving the STCC homologated Honda Civic test car built by JAS Motorsport in 2012, and run for that weekend by NIKA Racing.
The change to article 48 of the sporting regulations adds the following clause:
For competitors registered for the season, only two driver changes will be allowed during the season. Any change will be validated under discretion of the stewards.
This regulation will inhibit teams from entering a car with a rotating driver line-up for the season. Although this was not seen much in 2014, with the manufacturer teams preferring a fixed driver line-up in any case, and independent teams requiring their drivers to have found a full budget to justify the acquisition of the TC1 class touring car, this was somewhat more common in the TC2T class, with Campos Racing in particular having fielded a variety of drivers in their second SEAT León WTCC alongside John Filippi.
In previous years it has often been the Campos/SUNRED team that have regularly changed their drivers throughout the season, but the change to Article 48 will effectively end that practice. So far, Campos’ only confirmed driver for 2015 is Hugo Valente, with Dusan Borkovic having confirmed yesterday he will be departing to race for Proteam Racing this season.
The sporting regulations do not cover the format change for the Nürburgring Nordschleife event, which is set to be altered from the normal pair of 60km races with repair time, to a split race with no repair time allowed. The variation for this event is likely to be covered by the opening remarks in Article 11.
Save in exceptional circumstances, the Championship will be made up of two races per Competition. The distance of all races shall be equal to the least number of complete laps which exceed a distance of 60 km. The race distance must appear in the Appendix specific to each Competition.