TCR Australia to hold pre-season test

TCR Australia will formally launch its 2020 season with an all-in pre-season test at Winton next month.

TCR Australia to hold pre-season test
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Scheduled for February 26, the test will mark the only combined outing for the 2020 field ahead of the Asia Pacific Cup at Albert Park in March.

Organisers are expected as many as 30 cars to take part in the Winton test, with gates open to the public free of charge.

"Many of our TCR teams are planning to do some of their own testing, however, this will be the one and only time that all of the cars will be together prior to the [Australian] Grand Prix event," said category manager Liam Curkpatrick.

"Our pre-season test [in 2019] worked really well, and at that stage, some of the cars had only just come off aeroplanes.

"With more planning and a full year under our belts, the Winton test will be a great way to launch the 2020 season and I'd expect close to 30 cars being on track."

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Ahead of its second season, TCR Australia has also announced a new incentive for drivers classified as semi-professional.

Eligible competitors will be able to contest the Panta Cup, the winner of which will have its entry fee paid for an international TCR race in 2021.

The Panta Cup will be capped at six competitors, with eligibility to be determined by the category. The winning driver will need to race at all seven TCR Australia rounds.

“We have fielded a lot of interest from a great variety of teams and drivers for the 2020 TCR Australia Series, and we feel that there is enough interest from semi-professional drivers to introduce the Panta Cup,” said explained Curkpatrick.

“The great thing about the Panta Cup is that drivers who are deemed to be of a semi-professional or amateur experience will still compete under the same rules as the outright contenders, however, they will have their own points race to consider.

"It adds another talking point for the fans and followers, as well as an extra incentive for those in that class.

“By limiting the entrants to six, we are aiming to have all of those places filled quite quickly. It should be a competitive series in its own right.

“The mix of driver experience is going to be really diverse this year. From young guys coming out of karting or Formula Ford, to the semi-professionals and then some highly-credentialed talent. It all points towards an exciting year.”

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