V8 SuperTourers eyeing Challenge Cup/NZV8 merger
The future of New Zealand motorsport took a twist today with the possibility emerging that the NZV8 Championship could soon be combined with V8 SuperTourers’ second-tier series, the V8 Challenge Cup.
In the biggest indication yet that the future of NZV8s as a standalone category is under threat, MotorSport NZ – under which the NZV8 class is run – has issued a public statement suggesting a compromise is afoot.
After a landmark meeting between V8 SuperTourers and MotorSport NZ last Friday, V8ST chief executive Didier Debae told Speedcafe.com that ultimately there can only be one top level touring car class operating.
“If you understand what the talks are about there will only be one left, basically,” Debae said.
“Because there seems to be very little entries in the other championship we are going to end up taking over that part of the business.
“And that is taking over the cars that have been built for the series and amalgamate them with the Challenge Cup (which is currently being run for the existing NZV8 chassis).”
Debae, who came in to replace Paul Radisich as CEO of V8ST a couple of months ago, also suggested there could be a name change for the V8 Challenge Cup if an amalgamation takes place.
Meanwhile, MotorSport NZ – which recently underwent a significant internal shake-up – says that the talks with V8STs have been positive.
“I’m optimistic we can now move forward and find a way for the country’s top race classes to work together” MotorSport New Zealand president Shayne Harris said in a statement.
“This is a really positive move not just for the competitors involved but for the country’s circuits, officials and race fans.”
NZV8s could not be contacted by Speedcafe.com for comment on this story today.