Just one day after the FFSA GT Tour season opener at Nogaro, in which only nine cars took part, SRO Motorsports Group dropped a bombshell by announcing plans for a new championship for 2017.
SRO, which ran the French national championship from 1998 to 2010, has decided to launch its own French series, in an effort, it says, in order to save GT racing in France.
FFSA introduced the LMP3 class this season, in an attempt to attract more teams to the series and boost the grid. This, in combination with race format changes in 2015, resulted in a number of GT teams leaving the championship.
IMSA Performance, Team AKKA ASP and Sainteloc Racing have all entered the Blancpain GT Series, instead of running cars in the French national series, while other teams opted to focus on other categories.
Plans for a new, 100 percent GT series for 2017 include five races in France, one in Portugal and one in Spain.
SRO also confirmed it is open to talks with the French motorsport federation, FFSA, about the series becoming the new French GT Championship.
It is interesting to note that the current French championship is promoted by ORECA, which also supplies the engines for the ACO-developed LMP3 category.
SRO’s announcement also comes just a week after the new ACO-run Michelin GT3 Le Mans Cup held its test days at Paul Ricard.
Details of the new series will be announced at the SRO Motorsports Group press conference, which is set to take place during the Total 24 Hours of Spa, in July.