Renault Sport creates new type of Automobile event
On Tuesday July 13, in Paris, Renault Sport Technologies revealed the format of the World Series by Renault European Championship, to be launched in the spring of 2005. This championship will mark the merge of two championships, Eurocup Formula Renault V6 and World Series by Nissan, and will be the standard bearer for a brand new race meeting concept in Europe, associating motor sport with a wider form of entertainment - the objective being to create an automobile event combining high-level competition and broad popular appeal.
It was earlier this year in Monaco, on May 21, that Renault Sport Technologies and RPM, the organiser of the World Series by Nissan, announced that their respective European championships were to merge as of 2005, to form two new disciplines: Eurocup Formula Renault 2000 and World Series by Renault. This choice was guided by the current crowding on the high-end single seater market and the economic difficulties encountered by the Teams.
With its 40 year track record in sporting promotion, Renault Sport Technologies will be organizing this new top-of-the-range championship, as of Spring 2005, and for a minimum period of three years, in collaboration with its partner RPM. The twofold sporting ambition is to build a showcase formula for the best talents and to limit the costs of a season's racing, which is key to long-term viability for the discipline. A maximum of twenty-eight cars (14 teams) will line up on the starting grid, with priority -- initially -- going to the Formula Renault V6 and World Series by Nissan teams currently enrolled in their respective European championship.
The definitive 2005 meeting schedule will be available in early October following publication of F1, Moto GP and WRC schedules. The Championship will consist of 10 rounds taking the meetings to all corners of Europe: Germany: Oschersleben; Belgium: Spa or Zolder; Spain: Barcelona or Bilbao; France: Le Mans; UK: Donington; Hungary: Hungaroring; Italy: Monza; Monaco; Netherlands: Zandvoort; Portugal: Estoril.
Each round will feature two races with the exception of Monaco (1 race).
New Formula Renault V6: a winning combination
Formula Renault V6 and Dallara Nissan are soon to be one. A new single-seater, which will be a synthesis of the two current products, will be presented after the summer. Built around the Dallara chassis used by World Series by Nissan, the New Formula Renault V6 will get a new six cylinder engine based on the Nissan Nismo, developed by Solution F to produce 425bhp, and a Ricardo gearbox designed to allow differential and ratios to be adapted according to requirements.
New Formula Renault V6 will feature a new wheel-base and a brand new aerodynamic kit, giving it a similar outline to current Formula 1 cars: new flat bottom, new front crash box, new nose section, redesigned front and rear wings, side pods and engine fairings. Renault designers and Dallara engineers have been working hand in hand to deliver a car with markedly optimized aerodynamic efficiency (+10%).
From a technology standpoint, New Formula Renault V6 retains all the qualities that had made the Renault V6 the most advanced top-of-the-range single seater: the electronic management system (now further enhanced to control the entire power train), data acquisition system, steering wheel-mounted paddle shift, left-foot braking, steering wheel digital display and carbon brakes are all still on board. And, into the bargain, the single-seaters will be equipped with new tires developed by Michelin. In terms of safety features, the HANS system already in place will equip all competitors in the 2005 Championship. Finally, the car will meet the requirements of the new Formula 1 regulations whereby the driver can be extracted with the driver seat, in the event of an accident. This New Formula Renault V6, which combines high performance, reliability and cutting edge technologies, will provide for controlled operating costs, in line with the present market trend. The current Formula Renault V6, which Renault Sport will continue to develop, will be reserved for future national or continental championships outside Europe.
Sporting equity and containment of season costs: two priorities in the specification
Integrating or transforming key parameters that fundamentally modify the product will ensure technical equity between the current teams participating in Formula Renault V6 and World Series by Nissan. These include the new wheel-base that changes the overall balance of the car, the new engine with new torque curve, the new differential ramp which improves tracking in bends, the all-new aerodynamics and the new tires, all of which will make the existing setups redundant.
To provide for total sporting equity between the teams ahead of the season, no running will be permitted after the close of the Formula Renault V6 and World Series by Nissan 2004 championships. Renault Sport will organize the first test sessions as soon as the first of the single-seaters are delivered at the beginning of 2005. Both the technical characteristics of the New Formula Renault V6 and the format of the 2005 championship will allow season costs to be kept down, with a target of around Euros 450/500k per car, including overheads.
A brand new race meeting concept: competition, excitement and even more entertainment
The World Series by Renault will be the showcase discipline at the new independent race meetings that Renault is organizing from 2005. These European race weekends introduce a brand new concept in Europe, associating top-flight sporting competition with broader public attraction and entertainment. On the competition side, along with World Series by Renault, the race meetings will feature other spectacular races, in particular the European Megane Trophy Championship.
This new top-of-the-range competition saloon car, which will be presented at the Paris Motor Show, is built around a specific tubular chassis designed by Oreca. The car will be powered by a 320bhp development of the 3.5l V6 engine equipping Vel Satis and Espace. Its weight/power ratio (2.9 kg/bhp) plus its ground effect aerodynamics should allow the car to withstand comparison with the GT cars for a much smaller outlay and lower season costs. So this will be something to see!
Other successful disciplines will be on show, including the internationally known Formula Renault 2000, the benchmark for initiation class single-seaters, with 11 national championships around the world, plus a European championship and over 500 cars produced in just 4 years. Last but not least, and according to each European round, the national Clio Cups and Formula Renault 1600's will joint the race meetings.
But because the competition element alone is no longer enough to transform a sporting event into a popular success, Renault is going to add a festive element to these race weekends, in order to attract a wider, younger and more family-oriented audience: with events, concerts, historic parades, competitions, exhibitions, demonstrations... As with television, "never a dull moment" is the rule, and the aim is to help the public get "behind the scenes" of motor sport, to live it from the inside. Entry will be free of charge and there will be easier access to the paddock, the pitlane, and the starting grid so that there can be more direct contact with teams and drivers. Not forgetting live demonstrations, one weekend in two, by Renault F1 Team! Renault Sport is drawing on its 40 years of competition experience to launch an innovative race meeting concept in a desire to maximize the popular appeal of the events. By introducing this brand new concept, inspired by references such as Goodwood or the Le Mans 24 Hours, Renault Sport is demonstrating more than ever its active role in the world of motor sport.