FIA Sportscar Championship


FIA Sportscar Championship

The FIA Sportscar Championship was a sports car racing series created by John Mangoletsi and was eventually taken control of by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). It was a series similar to the FIA GT Championship, concentrating on two classes of open-cockpit sportscars in endurance races mostly around Europe. The series was folded after the 2003 season.

History

Following the demise of the World Sportscar Championship in 1992, Europe was left without a major sportscar series. In the United States however, attempts were underway to recreate the glory of the World Sportscar Championship with the IMSA GTP series returning to cheaper, open-cockpit sportscars to replace their highly technological and expensive closed-cockpit sportscars that were similar to those used in the World Sportscar Championship at its end. Following on this successful formula, in 1997 John Mangoletsi developed the International Sports Racing Series, a European-based series for open-cockpit sportscars that would be supported by major teams like Rafanelli, Riley & Scott, Kremer Racing, Joest Racing, Konrad Motorsport, and most of all Ferrari as a manufacturer, who was having success with their new 333 SP racer.

The series used a two class formula, named SR1 and SR2. SR1 class would feature larger cars with engines ranging from 6 to 12 cylinders, while the smaller SR2s would have production based engines with 4 or 6 cylinders. The SR1 cars were similar to the 24 Hours of Le Mans LMP class, while the SR2 cars were based on the hillclimb races CN class.

In 1999, the series was officially recognized by the FIA and renamed the Sports Racing World Cup. Ferrari's success with the 333SP was proven with a large number of entrants making it the chassis of choice in SR1, while Riley & Scott, Lola, and other manufacturers attempted to overcome the dominating Ferrari.

Come 2001, the series was officially taken over by the FIA, being renamed the FIA Sportscar Championship and continuing to expand into new markets, including a partnership with Grand American in the United States to share races, and eventually sportscar rules.

Unfortunately, with rise of the American Le Mans Series in 1999, with its similar European Le Mans Series in 2001, the FIA Sportscar Championship found it difficult to continue to gain not only top teams, but also a lack of manufacturer support as well. Grand American changed to adapt to this shift in sportscar design with their dropping of the SR1/SR2 classes in 2003. The FIA Sportscar Championship thus suffered from a dwindled amount of entries in 2003, leading to its demise at the end of the season. The FIA chose instead to back the new Le Mans Endurance Series that debuted a year later in 2004, allowing sportscar racing to continue in Europe.

Champions

ee also

* FIA GT Championship

External links

* [http://wsrp.ic.cz/fiascc.html ISRS/SRWC/FIA SCC Results 1997 - 2003]


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