Nissan Micra Cup promoter plans even better things for 2017
Jacques Deshaies, the promoter of the Nissan Micra Cup, declared that the Canadian series has been a great success this season and says better things are in the works for 2017.
The 2016 ended at the Mont Tremblant circuit with Xavier Coupal taking the title. What are your thoughts on the season?
Deshaies: I am very happy. The series’ officials have again learnt a great deal, we made a lot of changes to many small things throughout the season so that the Nissan Micra Cup Series be better and better. Not only do the drivers gain experience during the weekend races, but us as organizers also. I have heard some say that there seems to be a certain slowdown in media coverage during the second year of a series in car racing, because the newness has dissipated. The 2016 season has proven that this is not the case with the Nissan Micra Cup and this is a very important point for me. Media coverage is just as strong, Nissan Canada continues to invest itself in the series and the fans are more and more interested in our series.
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The fact that the title was only decided between three competitors by the very last round is also a good thing for the series…
It is clear that in the Nissan Micra Cup, nobody can predict who will be champion by mid-season! For the second year in a row, we had to wait until the last race of the season to know who would be the champion. It shows that with identical cars for all drivers, performance differences are so slight that it is only at the very end of the season that we can determine the champion. For me, this is extremely interesting and is one of the major objectives of the series, which is to keep the fans’ interest until the end.
Are you satisfied with the decision taken late last year to run races in Ontario?
Yes, and not only because it opened up the Ontario market to the series, bringing forward new drivers. This provided an opportunity to expose, with success, the series to thousands of spectators at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP) for two events. I would have expected more Ontario drivers to join the series but I understand some of their reticence at the outset. We had to prove ourselves. Some people were waiting for us at the bend, arguing that CTMP is a circuit for powerful cars and that the serie’s Micra S would not be spectacular. In the end, we had four exceptionally intense races on this mythical circuit and the series conquered the fans, showing that even on large, rapid circuits such as CTMP, the Nissan Micra Cup has its place. I expect that this message will circulate in Ontario this winter.
What’s next year’s schedule like at this point? Is returning to Ontario guaranteed in 2017?
Of course, we are now implanted in Ontario! This was not a forced passage for commercial reasons, we wanted to be in Ontario so that everyone could see the interest that the Nissan Micra Cup can garner. When I saw the paddocks filled with fans at CTMP, it was clear that it was a success. We are there to stay. There will once again be two races at Mosport next year in addition to the other highly popular event that is the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, in Québec. The remainder of the schedule, which will have six events, not eight like this year, will be revealed during the winter. We will work with Nissan Canada to develop the series even more. It is of course too soon to say more. Indeed, we, as organizers, are ready, but we understand that the event organizers still have certain aspects of their 2017 programs to finalize before announcing what series will take place.
Xavier Coupal wins 2016 Nissan Micra Cup title
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