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FIA Further strengthens support for ‘epic’ Macau Grand Prix

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FIA F3 World Cup, GT World Cup and World Touring Car Championship to headline lankmark event

The world governing body for motor sport, the FIA, has ramped up its support for the iconic Macau Grand Prix by endorsing three world title categories at the Guia circuit in November. The circuit will stage the third FIA GT World Cup, the second FIA F3 World Cup and for the first time in the FIA World Cup regime, a round of the World Touring Car Championship. Details of the strong entry field will be announced in Macao on October 24.

The Macau Grand Prix will be held on November 16-19.

FIA Director of Sports Car and Touring Car Championships, Frederic Bertrand has claimed the tri-partite support to be unprecedented in world motor sport.

“Macau was already the only motor sport venue to simultaneously host two FIA World Cups and the inclusion of the penultimate round of the WTCC increases its significance even more,” Mr Bertrand said.

The FIA and Macau organisers have worked co-operatively to ensure the 6.2km (3.8mile) high speed street circuit is able to meet the intense demands of the world class competition in three categories.

Entry qualifications have been upgraded and restricted to ensure quality fields are able to meet the high demands of the track.

Entry in the FIA GT World Cup has been limited to only platinum and gold standard professional drivers with a maximum field of 25 manufacturer supported entries.

The FIA F3 World Cup field will be restricted to 28 entries.

Safety improvements have been made to several kerbs and debris fences with newly formatted TECPRO barriers. Recovery protocols for stranded cars have also been upgraded.

The FIA will fly in a strong team of specialist delegates to support Macao-based organisers. “The improvements have all been a necessary part of ensuring the race meeting is capable of delivering on the immense pressures brought about by such an ambitious programme,” Mr Bertrand added. “Macau is a jewel in the crown of motor racing not only in the Asian area but in the world and it deserves to flourish and continue to grow.”

The FIA World Cups are one-off events designed to test the best of the best drivers on one of the most challenging race circuits in the world.

The World Touring Car Championship will be an important part of a ten round series.

Macau has previously hosted World Touring Car rounds but not in parallel with the World Cup races.

Maro Engel (Mercedes-Benz) and Laurens Vanthoor (Audi) have won the two FIA GT World Cup races.

Vanthoor’s 2016 victory came in spectacular fashion after just one lap when his car flipped on the circuit’s high speed main straight and he was declared winner under restart regulations.

Last year Antonio Felix da Costa (Carlin) held off a determined challenge from Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam) to win the inaugural FIA F3 World Cup by just 1.6 seconds.