Race 2 rather than Race 1 to utilise partially-reversed grid during fifth WTCR season
Longer races planned plus more time for repairs and set-up changes between contests
Points allocation for Race 1 and for Qualifying adjusted ahead of upcoming title chase
The focus will be firmly on even better racing in next season’s WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup following changes to the Sporting Regulations.
Drafted by the FIA Touring Car Commission following a period of consultation with the competing teams, the WTCR Sporting Regulations for 2022 were approved by the FIA World Motor Sport Council during its meeting in Paris earlier today (Wednesday).
Building on the ongoing success of the world’s top international-level touring car series, which is gearing up for its fifth action-packed season in 2022, the key rule changes are as follows:
Same Qualifying format but allocation of points tweaked
The three-phase Qualifying (Q1, Q2, Q3) elimination format remains unchanged but how points are awarded is all-new for 2022.
From next year, the fastest five drivers in Qualifying, regardless of at which point they set their best lap or whether they progress to Q3 or not, will be rewarded with points on a 10-8-6-4-2 scale.
The change will encourage drivers to push for fast lap times in each phase of Qualifying and avoid the temptation to adopt a strategic approach by trying to secure 10th place in Q2, which comes with pole position for the partially-reversed-grid race.
Race 1 is the big one, Race 2 the partially-reversed one
Previously the partially-reversed-grid race, drivers in Race 1 will line up for action according to the combined Qualifying results and compete for 30 minutes plus one lap (35 minutes plus one lap on street circuits in the event of the safety car being deployed). The top seven finishers will get more points than previously with drivers scoring as follows:
1st = 30 points; 2nd = 23; 3rd = 19; 4th = 16; 5th = 14; 6th = 12; 7th = 10; 8th = 8; 9th = 7; 10th = 6; 11th = 5; 12th = 4; 13th = 3; 14th = 2; 15th = 1
Race 2 becomes the partially-reversed-grid race with fans entertained for 25 minutes plus one lap (or 30 minutes plus one lap if there’s a safety car intervention on a street track). Points will be scored as follows:
1st = 25 points; 2nd = 20; 3rd = 16; 4th = 13; 5th = 11; 6th = 10; 7th = 9; 8th = 8; 9th = 7; 10th = 6; 11th = 5; 12th = 4; 13th = 3; 14th = 2; 15th = 1
How grids are formed reminder
The Race 1 starting grid will be determined by the final results of Q3 (positions 1-5) and Q2 (positions 6-12) for the top 12 grid positions. The results from Q1 will decide the remainder of the Race 1 grid.
For Race 2, grid positions 1-10 will be occupied by the first 10 cars according to the final combined qualifying results but in reverse order. Positions 11 and 12 will be occupied by the cars from Q2 that are not in reverse order. The remainder of the grid will be decided by the results of Q1 from positions 13 downwards.
Race lengths increased and timed in minutes, not measured in kilometres
Race 1 will run for 30 minutes plus one lap with Race 2 running for 25 minutes plus one lap. For street races, should the safety car be deployed, Race 1 will be automatically extended to 35 minutes plus one lap, with Race 2 increased to 30 minutes plus one lap. The aim is to lengthen the duration of each race by two laps to provide competitors with more valuable track time.
Repair Time extended
The opportunity for refuelling, repairs and set-up changes between races has been extended to a minimum of 60 minutes from the previous 20. The increase will give teams more opportunity to repair damage from Race 1 in a less intense manner or switch to a set-up that might enhance car performance for Race 2 and increase the chance of winning.
With more time to ready cars for the weekend’s second race, drivers will be more inclined to push harder in Race 1, with better racing the underlying objective.
Compensation Weight rules revised
The Compensation Weight rules have been revised and simplified for 2022. All cars will carry zero kilograms of Compensation Weight at the first event of the new WTCR season. For the second event the Compensation Weight for each model will be based on the best Qualifying time set during the previous event. From the third event the Compensation Weight will be based on the best Qualifying time set during either of the previous two events, rather than an average of the best two lap times out of three events, which was the case in 2021. It will mean the Compensation Weight will be quicker to update and therefore more responsive.
In addition, the maximum Compensation Weight has been reduced from 60 to 40 kilograms to avoid significant contrasting performances from race to race and therefore make the performance levels of each brand even closer. The same Compensation Weight principles will apply to race-by-race entries.
Entry period confirmed
All-season entries for 2022 will open at FIA.com on January 31 and close on March 16. Race-by-race entries will close two weeks before each event.
WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup 2022 calendar refresher
The WTCR calendar for 2022, which was approved on November 26, appears below:
Rounds 1 and 2: WTCR Race of Czech Republic, Autodrom Most, April 9-10
Rounds 3 and 4: WTCR Race of France, Circuit de Pau-Ville, May 7-8
Rounds 5 and 6: WTCR Race of Germany, Nürburgring Nordschleife, May 26-28
Rounds 7 and 8: WTCR Race of Hungary, Hungaroring, June 11-12
Rounds 9 and 10: WTCR Race of Spain, MotorLand Aragón, June 25-26
Rounds 11 and 12: WTCR Race of Portugal, Circuito do Vila Real, July 2-3
Rounds 13 and 14: WTCR Race of Russia, Sochi Autodrom, August 6-7
Rounds 15 and 16: WTCR Race of Korea, Inje Speedium, October 8-9
Rounds 17 and 18: WTCR Race of China, Ningbo International Speedpark, November 5-6
Rounds 19 and 20: WTCR Race of Macau, Circuito da Guia, November 18-20