Lisbon-based promoter Race Ready will partner with SRO Motorsports Group in 2019 to launch the GT4 South European Series, a new continental championship that will place particular emphasis on the Portuguese and Spanish markets.
Having found success on the Iberian Peninsula and beyond, the respected Portuguese classic car and racing event organiser will take a further step forward next year by organising a GT4 category in the south of Europe.
The new series will be open to GT4-homologated cars running SRO’s world-renowned Balance of Performance regulations. In light of the success achieved by both the GT4 European Series and Championnat de France FFSA GT – GT4 France, SRO was able to provide a blueprint to further expand the class’ European presence.
Race Ready, with the support of SRO Motorsports Group, concluded that the GT4 platform was the correct choice for the Portuguese and Spanish markets, where there is significant potential for a professional competition that bring together the region’s best drivers, teams and cars.
The Iberian promoter laid the foundations to launch the GT4 South European Series with races on five of southern Europe’s most prestigious circuits, featuring two in Portugal, two in Spain and one in France. In addition to these, a non-championship event will take the series to a historic street circuit for a standalone event.
Portimão’s Autódromo Internacional do Algarve and Estoril’s Autódromo Fernanda Pires da Silva will stage the two Portuguese rounds, while Circuit del Jarama and Circuit de Barcelona- Catalunya will host the championship’s Spanish events. The French round will take place at Circuit Paul Armagnac – also known as Circuit de Nogaro – as part of the the Coupesde Pâques weekend, where it will add further strength to the Championnat de France FFSA GT – GT4 France grid.
The inaugural season will also travel to the north of Portugal for a non-championship event, with the GT4 South European Series taking the sports car racing spirit to the legendary Circuito Internacional de Vila Real. Considered by many to be among the best street circuits in the world, this will allow drivers and teams to contest a unique event and follow the likes of Vasco Sameiro, Stirling Moss, David Piper, Teddy Pilette and Carlos Gaspar.
Formula For Success
The GT4 South European Series will use the same successful formula as its European, British, French, and German counterparts, with two 50-minute races being staged over a weekend. Each car will consist of two-driver crews on a Pro-Am (one compulsory Bronze driver) and Am (Bronze drivers only) basis.
The promotion of each event will be of central importance, with Race Ready and SRO Motorsports Group planning to meet the expectations of fans and develop an attractive spectator experience for the GT4 South European Series.
The national media exposure of the drivers and teams will not be neglected either, with an extensive promotional plan being put in place. In support of this, all races will be broadcast live on TV.
Race Ready will be responsible for the organisation of its own events, co-organising with SRO Motorsports Group for the joint Championnat de France FFSA GT – GT4 France round at Nogaro. This will kick off the season on 20-22 April and will see separate podiums and championship points awarded to the GT4 South entries.
Diogo Ferrão, Race Ready CEO: “The decision to create this championship meets a need that was identified for many years; a professional motor racing championship with high sponsorship return. To make it possible we needed a product that was interesting for the TV. The only way was to combine an international competition where the public could cheer for their countrymen with dream cars being driven to the limit, making it an attractive TV show. Finally, a world leader in organising GT series like SRO Motorsports Group will be a decisive partner in helping us with its technical and organisational know-how, and ensuring that the GT4 South European Series is a success.”
Stephane Ratel, Founder and CEO of SRO Motorsports Group: “I am delighted that SRO Motorsports Group will partner with Race Ready to organise the GT4 South European Series in 2019. The GT4 concept has enjoyed tremendous success in recent years and its expansion into the Portuguese and Spanish markets is another important step in its development. In Race Ready, I believe we have the ideal partner for this project as they understand the region and can always be relied upon to deliver a first-class event. I look forward to the series’ launch event at Nogaro and to watching its subsequent expansion on the Iberian Peninsula in 2019 and beyond.”
Press release SRO