The ADAC TOTAL 24h of the Nürburgring has been rescheduled for September, leaving a cloud-shaped hole in Falken Motorport’s schedule. The tyre brand’s team is followed by an enthusiastic fan base, though, and Falken has found a way to engage them without the totemic event of its motorsport season.
Motorsport UK announces plans to ‘get back on track’
Motorsport UK has detailed its plans for restarting motorsport in its eleven sporting disciplines. UK motorsport is currently suspended until 30 June, though the UK body acknowledges the need to take into account continuing restrictions and social distancing after this date. It has issued guidance to each code about restarting within government and healthcare authority guidelines via separate documents, available on its website.
Silverstone to host two grands prix in conditional deal
Formula 1 and Silverstone have reached an agreement in principle for the circuit to host two grands prix behind closed doors this summer. The races will need to get UK government approval to go ahead. In a message distributed on Twitter, Silverstone managing director Stuart Pringle said: "I am delighted to confirm that Silverstone and Formula 1 have reached an agreement in principle to host two races behind closed doors this summer.
Kenda has signed up Jeff Ward as its latest brand ambassador. The British-American multi-time AMA Motocross, Supercross, Supermoto champion, 7-time international MX des Nations champion, X Games gold medallist and AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductee joins Motocross Hall of Famer and X Games Gold Medallist Doug Henry in this role.
Audi announced its withdrawal from the German Touring Car Masters (DTM), effective at the end of the 2020 season. As things stand, BMW will be the only remianing factory team at the beginning of 2021; R-Motorsport dropped out earlier in the year. Audi wants to concentrate on Formula E and customer sport in the future according to a statement from Ingolstadt. The 2020 season of DTM has yet to start, due to the Coronavirus pandemic. DTM has not started its 2020 series yet due to the Coronavirus crisis, but has announced a new Esports series with Hankook a founding partner.
Long-standing tyre partner to DTM, Hankook is entering virtual motorsport with the German touring car series. The tyre manufacturer has become a founding partner of the DTM Esports Classic Challenge. The newly created race series brings together 15 current and former drivers of the DTM and the DTM Trophy. It is also adding a further five participants from the RaceRoom community of Esports racers. These challengers will be selected from the top 100 fastest racers, who proved themselves in a qualification round for the first race which started on 27 April. Professionally commentaters will provide race summaries in English.
The decision on whether Silverstone will host Formula 1 at all in 2020 is “still weeks away” according to the circuit’s managing director Stuart Pringle. However, Pringle has been able to confirm the news that should the circuit host one of exclusive tyre supplier Pirelli’s “home events” at all, it will be “behind closed doors”. Formula 1 is hoping to fulfil much of its planned 2020 calendar with an ambitious revised itinerary after racing was dramatically suspended at the eleventh hour in Melbourne, Australia. Plans current at the time of printing would see racing begin in Austria on 3-5 July, which could provide a "blueprint" for future events, with visits to European, Asian, American, and finally Middle Eastern venues making up a season of between 15 and 18 grands prix, according to F1 CEO Chase Carey.
MPA Creative orchestrates 3-year extension to BTCC-Autocar partnership
PR and marketing agency MPA Creative has confirmed a three-year media partnership extension between the British Touring Car Championship and major automotive magazine Autocar. MPA Creative orchestrated the initial deal between the two parties back in 2014, and since then the relationship has enjoyed much success, with all parties committed to extending the joint venture into at least a ninth consecutive year.
Toyo Tire strategic partnership with SUV parts supplier JAOS
Toyo Tire has signed a strategic partnership agreement with JAOS Corporation, the SUV automotive components manufacturer. Toyo and JAOS aim to increase the value of their brands in the SUV and four-wheel drive market around the world through mutual collaboration in marketing activities. The two companies will leverage their aggregate knowledge gained through joint participation in motorsports events and original product testing, for delivering products with enhanced appeal to the market.
British Touring Car Championship series organiser, TOCA, has issued a revised provisional calendar for the 2020 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship, comprising nine events and a total of 27 races, all of which will be screened live and exclusively on the ITV network. TOCA’s provisional plan commences in August, winding up in November, though the calendar remains conditional upon government directives and approvals regarding the resumption of sporting activities. If necessary, TOCA said it would make further amendments.
As a replacement for suspended events during the COVID-19 pandemic, Formula E has launched its official eSports series on rFactor2 as a fundraiser. ABB Formula E Race at Home Challenge, in support of UNICEF, staged its test round at the virtual Monaco ePrix circuit on 18 April 2020 at 15:30BST.
Cooper Tire Europe racing on with World RX Esports Invitational Series
As it is doing in the USA with its Road to Indy engagement, Cooper Tire will continue to race in the virtual world in Europe. The coming weeks will see the launch of the World RX Esports Invitational Series, with Cooper Tire Europe as tyre ‘supplier’.
The season start of many motorsport events has been delayed due to the coronavirus. Unable to get cars out on the track, US-based racecar driver development programme the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires has gone virtual with a new five-race e-series. This e-series allows drivers from Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship to compete against one another using race simulators.