Plans to introduce separate GT3 and GT4 races in the British GT Championship for 2018 have been shelved, with the series confirming it will remain with multi-class races next season.
Stephane Ratel announced in July that a split format was under consideration, following the rapid increase in GT4 fields this season, although several members of the paddock expressed doubts about the idea.
Thirty-four entries are currently planned for, with 14 GT3 and 20 GT4 cars set to make up the grid, although this balance could change at a later date.
“We have initially reserved spaces for 14 GT3 cars, which I believe sends a strong message about our commitment to the class, ” said championship manager Benjamin Franassovici.
“July’s announcement about the possibility of running separate GT3 and GT4 races resulted in much discussion in and outside of British GT’s paddock.
“There are pros and cons to both but after consultation with teams, and also taking into consideration the opinions of our fans, we believe a single multi-class championship remains the overwhelmingly best and strongest option for our championship in the foreseeable future.”
Entry applications are now open, earlier than the usual mid-November date, following impressive interest already.
TF Sport has already confirmed it will return with two Aston Martin Vantage GT3s and gentlemen drivers Mark Farmer and Derek Johnston.
“After a memorable and record-breaking 2017 campaign we’re hopeful that British GT will be bigger and better than ever before next season,” added Franassovici.
“Demand is already such that it makes sense for us to open the selection process earlier than usual so that teams have more time to plan once assured of their entry.”
The announcement also confirms a seven-event schedule next season without a GT4-only race at Thruxton as revealed at the annual SRO press conference in July.
The season will get underway at Oulton Park on March 31 – April 2.