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Intercontinental GT Challenge

SRO “Working on Solutions” for IGTC Teams in Spa Test Clash

IGTC teams “will not be compromised” despite 24H Spa test day clash with Indy 8H…

Photo: SRO

SRO Motorsports Group is working on ways for Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli teams to test at Spa-Francorchamps despite the official test days set to occur on the week of the Indianapolis 8 Hour event.

The latest scheduling issue, triggered by postponed events due to the coronavirus pandemic, sees the official two-day test for the rescheduled Total 24 Hours of Spa currently slated for Tues. Sept. 29 and Wed. Sept. 30, with on-track activity at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to kick off potentially as early as Thurs. Oct. 1.

Sportscar365 understands that SRO was forced into scheduling the two-day test, which was mandatory for all teams last year, on that week due to the limited availability of days at the Belgian circuit.

While at least one IGTC team has planned a potential workaround to complete both events, it’s believed the globe-trotting GT3 series is working to either have a dedicated IGTC test session the week of the rescheduled Spa race or potentially lift the pre-event private testing ban.

“We understand it might be complicated for some teams, drivers and manufacturers to race at Indianapolis and attend Spa’s test days,” SRO founder and CEO Stephane Ratel told Sportscar365. “We are currently working on solutions for Intercontinental GT Challenge teams and will inform them of our plans in due course.

“Those competing at both Indianapolis and Spa will not be compromised.”

The 24H Spa, which was initially scheduled for July 25-26, has been postponed to Oct. 24-25 due to government restrictions that have banned all events of more than 5,000 people until at least the end of August.

It has resulted in challenging logistics for IGTC teams for the month of October, with the Indianapolis race occurring just three weeks prior to Spa.

The Suzuka 10 Hours, which was slated to be the third round of the season, is still currently scheduled to take place on Aug. 23, despite the Suzuka round of GT World Challenge Asia powered by AWS having been canceled.

Leading Mercedes-AMG outfit GruppeM Racing, meanwhile, has provisionally planned to be present at both the Spa test days and Indianapolis with two different sets of crew and equipment, with its drivers and engineers slated to fly from Belgium to the U.S. directly after the test, according to team director Alex Zoechling.

“It’s not finalized yet but we’re looking into it. It could be the only solution for us,” Zoechling told Sportscar365.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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