Full service pit stops will be introduced into GT Pirelli World Challenge, complete with live refueling, as part of an overhaul in the sporting regulations for the GT3-based championship next year.
Announced during Friday’s GT stakeholders meeting at Watkins Glen, teams will utilize refueling rigs along with mandatory tire and driver changes during the pair of 90-minute races.
A maximum of two crew members will be allowed over the wall for tire changes with one air gun, alongside a dedicated refueler and dead man, with all crew using full refueling safety gear.
The changes will effectively mirror what’s currently seen in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup, including a minimum pit stop time determined on a track-by-track basis.
It comes following the expanded race format for the GT championship, which will see a total of six hours of track time over race weekends.
In addition to the two 90-minute races, teams will have two hours of free practice, a pair of 15-minute qualifying sessions to determine the grids for each race, plus a 30-minute paid test session for Bronze-rated drivers.
A maximum of four sets of Pirelli tires will be permitted for qualifying and races, with allocation options for practice still being discussed.
Silver Cup Planned for 2019
A Silver Cup could be introduced as a fourth class for 2019, alongside Pro, Pro-Am and Am categories.
The class, which would see Silver-rated driver pairings, will feature in the series on the condition of at least four full-season cars and would otherwise be grouped in the Pro-Am class with weight penalties.
Pro-Am will be designated for Platinum/Gold and Bronze pairings, with Am being for Bronze-rated drivers only.
As is the case with pit stops, the format follows that utilized in Blancpain GT, with series officials also able to make derogations on FIA driver ratings based on a race-by-race basis.