In a day wrought with motorsport announcements, some good; Formula 1 targeting a return to racing at the Red Bull Ring in July and some not so good; Audi departing DTM after 2020, leaving DTM with a calamitous situation to deal with from 2021 onwards. One of the biggest pieces of news though; Toca, organisers of the BTCC announced a revised calendar which will hopefully see the first race action for the series in 2020.
The news followed shortly after the announcement that the British Grand Prix is slated to go ahead, albeit behind closed doors with fans not permitted to attend due to the ongoing Covid19 pandemic. In the UK, death and infection rates are starting to fall, but there’s a long way until life returns to normal. Various Motorsport organisations and teams globally have rallied to assist in the fight against Covid19, from designing/building ventilators, producing facemasks/visors and gowns for Medical & Emergency service workers as well as assisting in the building of temporary Medical Facilities. We, at Racing 24-7.net salute you and thank you.
So, why the relevance to the British Grand Prix for the BTCC? The British Motorsport calendar is effectively anchored on the British F1 round with the different series working around the F1 date. BTCC is the first championship inline nationally to select their race dates, by lilt of being the biggest series in the UK alongside the British Superbike Championship & British GT.
The BTCC will move to a heavily condensed and shortened 9 race calendar for 2020, the second Silverstone round on the international circuit has been dropped, with only the national circuit event remaining. The revised calendar will see no less than 4 events take place in August with 2 pairs of back to back events.
The action will get underway August 1st/2nd at the Donington Park National circuit, the following weekend of August 8th/9th will see teams tackle the Brands Hatch Indy for round two. Round three takes place at Oulton Park August 22nd/23rd, with Knockhill playing host to round four August 29th/30th.
September sees another pair of back to back events. Round five will see the fastest track on the calendar; Thruxton, play host to the BTCC September 19th/20th. Round six the following weekend is the only date on the calendar that maintains some semblance to the original calendar at Silverstone National, September 26th/27th.
The final three rounds of the championship take place through October and November. October 10th/11th will take place at Croft in Yorkshire for round seven. Snetterton will host the penultimate round of the season on October 24th/25th. The traditional season finale at the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit will take place a month later than usual, November 14th/15th.
The revised calendar sees events taking place much later into the year. The final two rounds will be a trip into the unknown for the series with regards to the weather. Temperatures in the UK generally tend to drastically drop around the end of October, and the chance of rain increases dramatically. It will provide a demanding challenge for the teams and drivers to make their cars work in temperatures far lower than the cars normally race in, something which could throw a real curve ball into championship battles providing racing gets underway as expected.
While the calendar is a strong show of faith in the slowly improving situation in the UK, Toca has stipulated that the calendar is conditional at this stage. In other words, if Government directives don’t deem it possible for Sporting activities to resume, Toca has wriggle room to amend the calendar. At this time, there is no clarity from the UK government as to when the nationwide lockdown will be relaxed, let alone Sporting events resuming. At this time, we simply wait. Until next time, stay safe.
2020 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Provisional Calendar
Dates Rounds Venue (Circuit)
August 01/02 1, 2, 3 Donington Park (National)
August 08/09 4, 5, 6 Brands Hatch (Indy)
August 22/23 7, 8, 9 Oulton Park (Island)
August 29/30 10, 11, 12 Knockhill
September 19/20 13, 14, 15 Thruxton
September 26/27 16, 17, 18 Silverstone (National)
October 10/11 19, 20, 21 Croft
October 24/25 22, 23, 24 Snetterton (300)
November 14/15 25, 26, 27 Brands Hatch (GP)