New Zealand’s Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge will not return for a ninth season this summer, it was announced by series organisers today.
The all-Porsche class had run on New Zealand’s Tier 1 motorsport program alongside the BNT NZV8s and Toyota Racing Series, with Kiwi stars Daniel Gaunt, Jonny Reid and Craig Baird dominating the 2010/2011 season.
After seeing as few as 10 entries at last year’s events, a statement issued by GT3 Cup Challenge championship co-ordinator Douglas Blair today announced the end of the class.
“There has been a lot of discussion around the shape of the motorsport season in front of us all,” read the statement.
“It has been a difficult couple of years for all parties to find the funding to put a competitive package together in these challenging economic times.
“We have continued to state that if the interest is still there from enough competitors, and they are able to secure sponsorship funding to continue to put a strong series together, we would continue to fund the logistics around creating it as we believe it is a premier brand and series within tier one motorsport in New Zealand.
“It does seem though that as we head into season 2011/12 there is still a huge challenge for competitors to find sponsors and funding.
“We also believe we are in the middle of some challenging times for motorsport in general due to a number of factors outside of our control.
“After a number of potential proposals, a lot of discussion and soul searching, it is with some remorse that we must advise that after 8 seasons there will be no ninth season of Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge in the coming motorsport season of 2011/12.”
While leaving the door open to re-establishing the class in the future, the statement emphasised the importance of maintaining the integrity of the Porsche brand at all costs.
“We are of the view that it is probably best to exit the current competition altogether at this time rather than struggle to put on a show that may not be up to the high standard that we are all accustomed to and proud of,” it read.