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GT Sport postpones launch of new touring car TC Open series

GT Sport, the promoter of the planned TC Open Series, has postponed the launch of the new series due to a lack of entries.

The European-based series had been set to feature two-litre, front-wheel drive cars, including those built to the popular TCR regulations, in a format similar to that of the pre-existing GT Open.

The season had been planned to kick off at Spa-Francorchamps in May for a six-round season, before the start was moved to Paul Ricard in June.

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However the organisers have released a statement saying that the 2017 launch of the series has now been canned.

“During the course of 2016, GT Sport was encouraged by a number of manufacturers, teams, sponsors and organizers, to launch a European touring car series within the framework of GT Open / Euroformula racing weekends,” read a statement from GT Open.

“After some months of intense work, GT Sport presented last December to the FIA Council the proposal for a new touring car series, the TC Open, to be launched as from 2017. Although challenging, it was an exciting project.

“[During] the first five months of the year, we have been working relentlessly to bring the project to reality.

“Nevertheless, at this very moment, we see ourselves forced to take the decision to postpone the launch of the series, as the current situation in the touring car racing market does not provide the sufficient entry numbers and necessary conditions to ensure the quantity and quality standards needed to succeed, and match the objectives and expectations of GT Sport and all stakeholders.

“During this process, it has become clear, seeing the number of entries currently existing in almost all touring car championships, that a rethinking of the technical basis of the category is needed, in order to make touring car racing more affordable.

“We would like to thank all the bodies and individuals that supported and trusted us on this project that we hope to be able to represent in the near future, as we will continue working to provide a more sustainable platform for touring car racing.”

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