With the inaugural season of the Intercontinental GT Challenge due to start shortly, the SRO Motorsports Group has revised the 2016 calendar to bring it down to three rounds for the inaugural season. The Intercontinental GT Challenge now consists of the Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour, the Total 24 Hours of Spa and the Sepang 12 Hours.
The second round, scheduled to take place at the circuit of the Americas on the 5-6 March, has been cancelled.
With GT3 racing becoming ever more popular, the SRO Motorsports Group created the Intercontinental GT Challenge, as the first ever global GT3 Series. This new Challenge is aimed at manufacturers, who are encouraged to use mainly local teams to represent them in these leading GT3 races, as it is more cost- and time-effective to fly engineers and drivers around the world rather than cars and equipment.
Unfortunately, the growing popularity of GT3 racing also comes with increasing calendar constraints. Together with the fact that a number of teams are entering new cars this season – and will have little time to get that machinery ready – SRO has considered it was more reasonable to postpone the first Endurance race in the USA where a GT3 car can compete for overall victory to the end of the 2017 season.
Stephane Ratel (Founder and CEO SRO Motorsports Group): “Despite interest from a good number of American teams for our proposed event, the difficulty we had to motivate European teams to cross the Atlantic ahead of an extremely competitive Blancpain season, convinced us it was better to postpone the introduction of the American round of the Intercontinental GT Challenge to October 2017, at a time when both American and European teams will have finished their respective seasons and be ready for a Grand « GT final ».
Intercontinental GT Challenge 2016 Calendar
Australia : 6–7 February 2016 – Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour
Belgium : 28–31 July 2016 – Total 24 Hours of Spa
Malaysia : 10–11 December 2016 – Sepang 12 Hours