If you liked it in 2018, you’re going to love it in 2019!
Season two of the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO is go and if you liked it in 2018, you’re going to love it in 2019!
New drivers, new cars, a new track and a new point-scoring system are just some of what’s in store during the upcoming campaign when one of motorsport’s big success stories of recent years changes up another gear.
Kicking off in Morocco, WTCR OSCARO season two includes stops in Hungary, Slovakia, Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, China, Japan and Macau with newcomer Malaysia hosting the super-finale.
A brief history
The WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO replaced the FIA World Touring Car Championship for the 2018 season and was an instant hit with more drivers, more cars, more races and more action thrilling fans across the globe.
Promoted by Eurosport Events and administered by the FIA – the organisations behind the WTCC – a licencing agreement with WSC (owner of the TCR concept and trademark) permits the use of the TCR technical regulations, a more accessible and affordable set of touring car rules when compared to the previous TC1 era.
Alfa Romeo, Audi, Cupra, Honda, Hyundai, PEUGEOT and Volkswagen have embraced the regulations through their customer racing departments, while Lynk & Co, the new global urban mobility brand from China, is the eighth car make represented in WTCR OSCARO in 2019.
WTCR OSCARO season two is contested over 30 races across 10 weekends in three continents from April to December. Each event typically takes place over three days and consists of two free practice sessions, two qualifying sessions and three races.
A maximum of 32 all-season entries are permitted with two wildcards also considered, subject to FIA approval. With no manufacturers’ title awarded under cost-control measures, WTCR OSCARO caters for private teams although a number of drivers are supported by brand customer racing divisions.
What’s new for 2019?
Standardised points… for top 15
WTCR OSCARO gets a new points system for 2019 with the aim of ensuring more drivers can score points more often. The top 15 drivers according to the final classification of Races 1, 2 and 3 are rewarded as follows:
The same points-scoring system is applied to the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO for Teams. Wildcard drivers are no longer be eligible for points.
First Qualifying pace rewarded with points
Points are distributed not only following Second Qualifying as in 2018 but following First Qualifying as well. The fastest five drivers according to the final classification score as follows:
Entry restrictions introduced
In order to balance participation between the customer racing brands competing in the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO (Alfa Romeo, Audi, Cupra, Honda, Hyundai, Peugeot and Volkswagen took part in 2018 and are joined by Lynk & Co in 2019), a maximum of four cars per brand with two-car teams only are permitted. Entries opened on 15 December.
Tweaks to testing rules too
To preserve track time equity and avoid budget increases, further testing restrictions are in place for 2019. No testing is allowed on any WTCR circuit prior to or during a race weekend once the season is underway with some exceptions, such as official tests organised by WTCR promoter Eurosport Events and 24h-Rennen sessions during the Nürburgring Nordschleife event.
On-event staff numbers restricted
Ten armbands are issued per car entered and only those operational staff assigned with an armband, having registered with the FIA before each event, are allowed to work on cars for duration of an event.
Free Practice 1 on the move
WTCR OSCARO events typically take place over three days to avoid timetables becoming too congested. As a result, Free Practice 1 takes place on day one, and is extended to 45 minutes to increase track time for teams and drivers.
Q3 running order adjusted
The running order for the Q3 phase of Second Qualifying is adjusted with the driver setting the fastest time in Q2 choosing their starting order in the five-car Q3 shootout. It means the quickest driver in Q2 will no longer have to wait for four other drivers to complete their Q3 runs before attempting their own Q3 run. The change follows feedback from drivers who felt they could be disadvantage by waiting due to the potential drop-off in car performance and tyre temperature, for example.
Where and when: calendar 2019
Rounds 1-3: WTCR Race of Morocco, Circuit Moulay El Hassan, Marrakech (5-7 April)
Rounds 4-6: WTCR Race of Hungary, Hungaroring (26-28 April)
Rounds 7-9: WTCR Race of Slovakia, Slovakia Ring (10-12 May)
Rounds 10-12: WTCR Race of Netherlands, Zandvoort (17-19 May)
Rounds 13-15: WTCR Race of Germany, Nürburgring Nordschleife (20-22 June)
Rounds 16-18: WTCR Race of Portugal, Vila Real (5-7 July)
Rounds 19-21: WTCR Race of China, Ningbo (13-15 September)
Rounds 22-24: WTCR Race of Japan, Suzuka (25-27 October)
Rounds 25-27: WTCR Race of Macau, Circuito da Guia (14-17 November)
Rounds 28-30: WTCR Race of Malaysia, Sepang (TBA)
Who’s in it to win it?
The drivers announced as of 31 December 2018 are as follows:
Mehdi Bennani (MAR), Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
Thed Björk (SWE), Lynk & Co 03 TCR
Nicky Catsburg (NED), Hyundai i30 N TCR
Yann Ehrlacher (FRA), Lynk & Co 03 TCR
Augusto Farfus (BRA), Hyundai i30 N TCR
Rob Huff (GBR), Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
Johan Kristoffersson (SWE), Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
Norbert Michelisz (HUN), Hyundai i30 N TCR
Yvan Muller (FRA), Lynk & Co 03 TCR
Andy Priaulx (GBR), Lynk & Co 03 TCR
Gabriele Tarquini (ITA), Hyundai i30 N TCR
Licensed by WSC to EEL/FIA as the FIA WTCR regulations, the TCR (Touring Car Racing) technical regulations are frozen until the end of 2019. Only TCR cars homologated by WSC and assigned with the FIA WTCR technical passport issued by the FIA are eligible for all-season participation (wildcard entries will not require a technical passport). The FIA and TCR technical departments determine the Balance of Performance (BOP) ahead of the opening event of the season following an extensive period of assessment and analysis. The BoP will evolve, according to an automatic formula based on relevant lap times, from the second event in Hungary and will be recalculated using lap times from the three previous events. To balance performance, additional weight to a maxmum of 60 kilos may be added and power adjusted. Each car is assigned one engine for the season and any changes will result in grid penalties. Furthermore a maximum of five turbos per car per year can be used. The FIA will be responsible for technical management in consultation with TCR representatives.
TCR in short
TCR cars are front-wheel-drive, four/five-door saloons or hatchbacks using turbocharged production engines with a capacity of between 1750-2000cc and with a maximum power output of 350hp. No fewer than 19 TCR-based championships or series exist around the world while several manufacturers have, or are in the process, of homologating TCR cars including Alfa Romeo, Audi, Cupra, Honda, Hyundai, PEUGEOT and Volkswagen. To date, more than 600 TCR racing cars have been built and sold to customer teams. More information on TCR: www.tcr-series.com