WTCR reveals 2022 calendar, includes Pau street track
The WTCR series has revealed its 2022 calendar, which includes a first trip to the classic Pau street circuit since 2009 and a return to its traditional Macau season finale.
The calendar will expand from eight events in 2021 to 10 next year, including a three-round Asian leg subject to travel restrictions and quarantine agreements.
The season will begin at Most in the Czech Republic in April, following the championship's first visit to the track last month, before visiting Pau's famous street track as the French track hosts its first international event since 2019.
In its previous guise as the World Touring Car Championship, WTCR visited Pau between 2007 and 2009, with Alain Menu (Chevrolet) and Augusto Farfus (BMW) each taking two wins.
Other circuits to return to the calendar include the popular Vila Real street circuit in Portugal, which last appeared in 2019, before the planned Asian leg begins with a return to the Ningbo circuit in China, a first trip to South Korea's Inje circuit and Macau's famed Guia circuit.
Series boss Francois Ribeiro said a return to the number of rounds held before the pandemic was “always the intention” after the COVID-enforced reduction to six events in 2020 and eight in 2021.
“We are therefore very pleased we have been able to achieve this target by working in partnership with the FIA,” said Ribeiro.
“We also thank our stakeholders and acknowledge their commitment in support of what we hope will be the gradual return to a more normal calendar scenario with races in Europe and Asia.
“Being able to include the Grand Prix de Pau weekend within the WTCR framework for the first time is very exciting and provides an opportunity to race on another iconic street track in a year when we will also make our comeback in Vila Real.
“Once again, every effort is being made to return to China and Macau following our planned first visit to South Korea in the autumn. But, as before, this will only be possible if travel restrictions and quarantine arrangements allow.
“However, a contingency plan is in place should we have to wait for one more year before returning to this important part of the world.
“That said, the calendar for 2022 presents new challenges and new opportunities and provides more reason for positivity as we step up preparations for the fifth WTCR season.”
A WTCR statement added that a number of changes to the sporting regulations for the 2022 season have also been approved by the FIA Touring Car Commission, subject to ratification at the FIA World Motor Sport Council.
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