SRO Motorsports Group
In 2015 SRO Motorsports Group celebrated its 20th anniversary.
SRO Motorsports Group has specialised in the promotion and organisation of motorsport series since 1995. Although primarily concerned with GT racing, with whose revival in the 1990s SRO was inextricably linked, the company also managed ‘star-maker’ single-seater championships, such as the Cooper Tires British F3 International Series. SRO has offices in London, Paris and Liège.
SRO Motorsports Group is chaired by company founder and CEO Stephane Ratel, who, working with a team of full-time staff and freelancers worldwide, and with the support of the Royal Automobile Club of Belgium, is one of the most respected personalities in the motorsport industry.
A brief history
1995: SRO Ltd is created to organise the Lamborghini Supertrophy.
1997: SRO becomes the promoter of the new FIA GT Championship.
1998: SV Organisation (Later SRO Paris) is created and takes over the promotion of the FFSA French GT Championship.
2000: SRO co-ordinates the two European rounds of the European Le Mans Series, at Silverstone and the Nürburgring, as well as running the Lamborghini Supertrophy, French GT Championship and FIA GT Championship.
2001: The FIA GT Championship joins forces with the FIA European Touring Car Championship and the Formula Renault Eurocup, with the support of Eurosport, and to run as the Eurosport Super Racing Weekend multi-series platform.
2002: The multi-platform series becomes the LG Super Racing Weekend package. The French Supertouring Championship is added to the list of Championships organised. SRO takes over the running of the ailing FIA Sportscar Championship for 2003.
2003: The FIA GT Championship, within the LG Super Racing Weekend, enjoys its most successful year since the 1997-1998 heyday. Stéphane Ratel works on the rapprochement between the FIA and the ACO, forming the Le Mans Endurance Series for 2004.
2004: SRO London takes over the promotion of the British F3 and GT Championships. SRO runs the FFSA Super Série, bringing together the major French national series.
2005: British F3 is renamed the British F3 International Series and accompanies the Le Mans Endurance Series at four rounds. SRO works on the launch of the FIA GT3 European Championship.
2006: The FIA GT Championship breaks away from Eurosport and sets up its own calendar. The new FIA GT3 European Championship is a huge success, with grids of over 40 cars and eight manufacturers represented in its inaugural season.
2007: The World Motor Sport Council announces that a FIA GT1 World Championship will be launched in 2010, with new technical regulations for GT1 and GT2 cars.
2008: SRO agrees to its first franchise with the Dutch GT4 Championship. Belcar becomes the Belgian GT Championship.
2009: An agreement is reached to launch the FIA GT1 World Championship in 2010. The first franchise for GT4, the Dutch GT Championship, gets underway and is a big success.
2010: A new chapter in GT racing history is created, with the launch of the FIA GT1 World Championship. Six prestigious brands - Aston Martin, Corvette, Ford, Lamborghini, Maserati, and Nissan – were each represented by two teams of two cars each, forming an impressive grid of 24 GT1 cars. Among the drivers were seven former FIA GT champions and nine former Formula 1-drivers. Ten meetings over three continents, each with two one-hour-long sprint races, produced action packed racing all over the globe.
The GT4 Asia Cup expands the GT4 franchise outside Europe for the first time.
2011-2012: Since the new FIA GT1 World Championship was based on a sprint format, there was a need for an international GT endurance championship. The Blancpain Endurance Series is launched and meets instant success with a strong level of entries for the five-race series centred around the Total 24 Hours of Spa.
The Mercedes Benz Grand Challenge is launched in Brazil while SRO becomes the promoter of the Formula Renault Championship and the Air Asia Renault Clio Cup in the UK.
In 2012 the FIA GT1 World Championship and the FIA GT3 European Championship race at the Moscow Raceway; this is the first time an FIA World Championship event is held in Russia.
2013: New-look FIA GT Series announced in January. Blancpain Endurance Series and British GT Championship grow to record levels.
2014: Encouraged by the success of the Blancpain Endurance Series, world-renowned Swiss watch manufacture Blancpain and the SRO Motorsports Group decide at the end of 2013 to extend their partnership to the Sprint series, offering teams and drivers the opportunity to compete for an overall Blancpain GT Series title, linking sprint and endurance.
2015: With the inaugural season of the Blancpain GT Series being a success, SRO continues to expand the series. New venues like Misano and Moscow are included on the calendar and important prize money is introduced in the Blancpain Endurance Series. With new programmes on the way such as the GT Sports Club for amateur drivers, the Ultracar Sports Club for the most spectacular machines, the SRO Race Centre at Paul Ricard in association with Michel Mhitarian and the new partnership with Sepang International Circuit on the Sepang 12 Hours, SRO continues its development and its fully in gear for the next 20 years.
2016: In 2016, SRO Motorsports Group will promote several championships and series, such as the Blancpain GT Series, including the iconic Total 24 hours of Spa, the British GT Championship, the Blancpain Sports Club with the Blancpain GT Sports Club and the Blancpain Ultracar Sports Club, the GT4 European Series and the Intercontinental GT Challenge. SRO Motorsports Group runs also the SRO Race Centre by MMC, a high-level technical centre at the Paul Ricard Circuit in the south of France and Curbstone, that provides ultimate track driving opportunities on world renowned race circuits in Western Europe for supercar owners, as well as test driving facilities for race car drivers.