WTCR announce fewer races and cost cutting measures

The World Touring Car Cup organisation has announced a change of the race weekend format ahead of the 2020 season along with a number of cost cutting measures in order to maintain a strong grid size.

“We have acted decisively and responsibly to protect WTCR, keep it strong for all the stakeholders, maintain its appeal among fans and media and ensure it remains attractive and accessible for new privateer teams wanting to race at the highest possible level of TCR,” said François Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events, the WTCR promoter.

The the number of races per weekend has been reduced from three to two, and there will only be one qualifying session per weekend, held in a three-phase shootout format.

Race 2 will be three laps longer compared to Race 1, with the grid for Race 1 being partially reversed and the grid for Race 2 decided by the combined qualifying order.

The majority of race weekends will be held over two days, with two free practice sessions on the first day.

Cost cutting measures will be implemented in the form of staff restrictions and fewer tyres per race weekend.

18 new Goodyear tyres will be allowed per car for the first event of the season and 12 new tyres per the race weekends after that, a reduction of four and six respectively compared to 2019.

Teams with two cars will be restricted to a staff of 12, while three-car teams will be limited to a staff of 18. The number of staff permitted to work on the car, wearing the designated armbands, is limited to ten.

“Unsustainable budgets and acknowledging the impact the coronavirus outbreak is having on the global economy, has accelerated the introduction of a number of cost reduction measures and format changes developed together with the FIA and team representatives,” said Ribeiro.

“But these changes are a must, not a nice to have and we must keep moving forward in a responsible fashion. However, Eurosport Events, in its role as the WTCR promoter, will not reduce the broadcast output or the marketing effort in order to protect the product that we deliver to the fans and the value and exposure we bring to the teams and sponsors involved.”

The entry deadline for the 2020 season has been extended to March 6th.