|Now celebrating its fifth season, the Rotax Euro Challenge continues to grow and draw further interest from new countries, with drivers this year coming also from Mexico, Colombia, United Arab Emirates & New Zealand, to see over 30 nations once more represented in the championship. |
With the increased number of competitors racing as well from eastern Europe, organisers RGMMC Establishment believed it was only fitting that they have the opportunity to host a round of the series. This has led to the introduction to the Euro Challenge of the Autodrom Česká Lípa in Sosnova, which has previously hosted CIK-FIA events in the past. The event organisers are looking forward to welcoming the Czech Republic as the third round during the summer holidays.
Due to the incredible demand for places in Senior Rotax Max this year, the number of competitors in the category has been increased to 90 and there was already a waiting list at close of entries on February 15th. With only limited drivers being able to qualify for the finals, RGMMC has organised a consolation race in addition to the repecharge, giving everyone the chance to compete on the Sunday. The ‘MOJO Cup’ will see still the podium prize-winners awarded a trophy together with a set of the new regulation MOJO D2 tyres.
The number of competitors for the DD2 class was also extended beyond the original grid of 34 because of the increase in entries this season. Former Rotax Multiple Grand Finals/Euro Champion and current A1 GP Rookie Wesleigh Orr and fellow South African Grand Finals (Max)/Euro DD2 winner/Formula driver Cristiano Morgado will also join the impressive line-up. The two-speed gearbox class is proving to be more and more popular, even as the most recent of the Euro Challenge categories to be included.
RGMMC Establishment has been extremely dedicated as the organisers and promoters of the event, to ensuring its ongoing success on behalf of championship owners BRP-ROTAX. As Managing Director of RGMMC, Roland Geidel is totally involved with making the 5th year the best one yet. He appreciates how important it is to have a fair and enjoyable competition.
“The interest and growth for the Euro Challenge has been truly astounding. We literally attract competitors and teams from around the globe, who compete with us for the entire series. The quality of the drivers and level of competition is exceptional and I really believe that this series has put aside the myth that Rotax only attracts ‘hobby karters’.
What I find personally most gratifying is that drivers remain faithful to the ‘Euro’ and often return year after year. Those who have gone on to greater achievements in Motorsport come back purely for the excitement they get from racing at the Rotax Euro Challenge. The RGMMC team is looking forward to producing another exciting and successful series in 2008 and would like to thank competitors and teams for their continued support.”
The very popular Sologne Karting Circuit in Salbris, France hosts the first round of the Euro Challenge as it has over the previous 3 years. The venue offers one of the best CIK-homologated tracks in Europe for some great racing and is happy to welcome back the event, always making a concentrated effort to show the international visitors excellent hospitality.
Around 190 drivers will be competing in the prevailing wintery conditions from March 26 to 30, with four classes being contested: Rotax Max – Junior, Senior and Masters, plus the Rotax DD2 category. Three of the four current title holders crowned at the Rotax Grand Finals in the UAE last December will join the impressive line-up in Salbris, looking to claim the 2008 European trophy.
Practice gets underway at Salbris for all classes from Wednesday, March 26 leading up to official timed practice Friday afternoon. Racing begins Saturday, where each driver competes in three qualifying heats per class to determine the pre-finals grid positions. Those unlucky in making the cut automatically will compete in either the second chance races or MOJO Cup (Senior Max ‘B-final’) Sunday morning, before the finals after lunch.
During all rounds of the championship, every timed session on-track can be followed live on the internet once again with Kart Data Live Timing. This is available starting from Friday’s practice throughout the weekend at www.kart-data.com
Following the recent success of the Euro Coverage, RGMMC has also secured RaceWorld TV to continue to bring the racing action to the fans. Streaming videos of the finals and prizegiving ceremony will be up online soon after the racing concludes on the Sunday on www.raceworld.tv
The full entry list for the opening round this week at the Sologne Karting circuit in France can be found at www.rgmmc.com by clicking on “Race 1 - Salbris”. Links to Sologne Karting Circuit, Kart Data Live Timing, RaceWorld TV and RGMMC’s Drivers Photo Gallery are also found here on the official ROTAX Euro Challenge homepage.
2008 ROTAX EURO CHALLENGE
March 26 – 30 Salbris, France
May 28 – June 1 Wackersdorf, Germany
July 23 – 27 Sosnova, Czech Republic
September 24 – 28 Genk, Belgium* (*subject to FIA agreement)