The Touring Car Cup is sure to generate significant interest among fans and competitors alike when it is staged as part of this year's FIA Motorsport Games in Rome.
Scheduled for 1-3 November and with the nearby Vallelunga Circuit staging the on-track action, the event will see competitors from across the globe chase gold, silver and bronze medals in six distinctive racing categories. The concept draws inspiration from last year's FIA GT Nations Cup, with the Touring Car Cup among the new additions for 2019.
With a history that stretches back more than half a century, the discipline is a firmly-established and hugely popular aspect of the sport, be it domestically or on the international stage. Often referred to as ‘tin-tops’, touring cars are able run close together at high speed and even go door-to-door, making for tremendous entertainment. It is also the discipline that most closely resembles everyday road cars, adding to the appeal for fans.
The recent creation of the TCR regulations has given the category a new lease on life, with championships across the globe adopting the platform and attracting significant grids. As such, TCR was the natural choice for this year's FIA Motorsport Games. The number of cars eligible to compete is extensive, which should ensure a strong entry list that features a variety of machinery. And, given its reputation for ultra-close racing, this should be an action-packed event.
The competition will provide entrants with a total of three hours’ track time. They will begin with a pair of 30-minute practice sessions, allowing them to fine-tune their machinery on the 4km Vallelunga Circuit. After this, two qualifying sessions of the same length will establish the starting order for a pair of races.
The first will last 25 minutes +1 lap and the second will run for 30 minutes +1 lap. The top-10 finishers from race 1 will score points, with the allocation being expanded to the top-15 finishers in the second outing. The gold medal will be awarded to the driver who scores the highest number of points across the two races. In this sense the Touring Car Cup will be a mini championship, with consistency becoming an important aspect of a successful effort. Indeed, a driver will not necessarily need to win on-track to take home the gold.
The Touring Car Cup category will run alongside the GT Cup, Drifting Cup, F4 Cup, Karting Slalom Cup and Digital Cup at the 1-3 November event. The results from each will produce an overall medal table, with the top National Sporting Authority (ASN) awarded the inaugural FIA Motorsport Games trophy during the closing ceremony in Rome.