Next year’s Golden Homes North Island Endurance Series will be expanded to accommodate a new two-hour race for clubman cars.
The two-hour endurance race will run on the same day as the existing one- and three-hour endurance races. However, it will instead be exclusive solely for cars whose best lap time at Hampton Downs and Pukekohe does not exceed 1m13.0s.
President of the North Island Endurance Racing Driver Club (NIERDC), Dave Dovey, says the idea of the two-hour clubman race is to have the club racer maintain an interest in endurance racing.
“Following our Covid-shortened series this year, we have had a number of past and present competitors saying that the money and increased professionalism in both our one- and three-hour races is leading to a ‘them and us’ mentality,” said Dovey.
“[There is also] a worrying and potentially dangerous element to the clubman type racer with regard to the sheer speed differential between the fastest and slowest competitors.
“As a direct result of this feedback we have re-jigged our Saturday one-day racing to accommodate an additional two-hour race strictly for clubman type vehicles, which we have called appropriately ‘Clubman’s 2 Hour Race’.”
The race will still have a highly competitive element to it, with points and a championship on offer. Similarly, there will be a compulsory timed pit stop for refuelling and driver changes in order to best manage safety during refuelling.
Entry fees are expected to be lowered to entice new competitors, teams and vehicles to the series.
NIERDC will permit a range of cars to enter the race, provided they don’t exceed the time bracket. These include a variety of Hondas, BMWs, Mazda’s, V8 and SsangYong Utes, and potentially Toyota 86s.
With the 2021 series set to return to its usual April to June timeframe, it will be an ideal opportunity for the likes of teams and drivers from the Honda N1 Cup, Mazda Racing Series, 2K Cup and BMW Race Series to gain some seat time.
NIERDC will reveal dates and venues for the 2021 North Island Endurance Series in the next few weeks.