Next year’s European Le Mans Series will feature a six-round championship, with the addition of a new event at Spa-Francorchamps and expansion to three-day event weekends.
The season will again kick off at Silverstone in April, alongside the FIA World Endurance Championship, before heading to Imola on May 13-15 for the final pre-Le Mans race.
The third and fourth rounds of the championship will again take place at Red Bull Ring and Paul Ricard, respectively, followed by a new event at Spa, either at the end of September.
Estoril will play host to the season finale, one week later than this year, on Oct. 21-23.
The series, meanwhile, moves back to three-day events, with a 90-minute Free Practice session scheduled on Fridays, followed by an additional practice on Saturday morning, allowing qualifying to be moved up to Saturday afternoons.
The only exception to the weekend format will be Silverstone, due to the shared bill with the WEC.
“The 2016 calendar represents the next step in the growth of the European Le Mans Series,” said ACO President Pierre Fillon.
“The 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps is an important addition to the ELMS, while the five other races, held on the same tracks at the same time of year, are well established and growing in popularity.”
Additionally, ELMS weekends will be supported by Formula Renault 2.0 Eurocup and Renault Sport RS01 Trophy next year.
“The addition of these two high profile single seater and GT race series will enhance the popularity of the ELMS weekends and give the fans two more reasons to join us for an exciting 2016 season,” said ELMS CEO Gerard Neveu.
2016 European Le Mans Series Schedule:
March 29-30 — Prologue (TBA)
April 15-16 — Silverstone
May 13-15 — Imola
July 15-17 — Red Bull Ring
Aug. 26-28 — Paul Ricard
Sept. 23-25 — Spa-Francorchamps*
October 21-23 — Estoril
*To be confirmed