This season’s Spa-Francorchamps British GT round will feature a revolutionary new series on its support bill thanks to Reiter Engineering, KTM and SRO’s Young Stars Championship.
The single-make, entry level series aims to provide budding young drivers and team personnel with a highly professional but cost effective environment in which to hone their skills.
Each KTM X-Bow GT4 driver pairing will be supported by a different European university. This extends to two emerging engineers as well as a marketing and business student who will each receive additional support from established professionals. Meanwhile, Reiter Engineering will maintain the cars between events.
This same approach applies to the drivers who can complete a full season for just 59,000 euros with the prospect of a paid-for seat in the Blancpain Sprint Cup for both male and female champions.
Each of the five GT4 European Series-supporting Reiter Young Stars race weekends begin on a Thursday before moving on to free practice, qualifying and races. Set-up work with engineers and courses with the industrial partners form an integral part of the process.
However, rather than being a traditional ‘fastest car wins’ affair, competitors will need to do much more than merely take the chequered flag first to claim the Reiter Young Stars Championship. Organisers believed that concentrating on this single aspect wouldn’t address the concept’s core element and also prove unfair as two drivers share one car. Therefore, in addition to scoring points in each race, championship standings will be influenced by the likes of fastest five race laps per male and female driver, tyre wear during an event and even damage incurred.
There will also be a classification for engineering students presided over by a panel of experienced motorsport professionals.
Team owner Hans Reiter explained that GT racing’s continuing boom had resulted in fewer opportunities for young professionals to make their mark, and that the Young Stars programme was a step towards rectifying that.
“With the support of KTM Sportscar GmbH and Stephane Ratel, we are able to originate the Reiter Young Stars Championship already for the 2016 race season,” he said.
“To explain the idea behind this new championship is easy: primarily the drivers’ education should be sustainable and give our partners the opportunity to access talented young engineers. Young drivers and engineers should be introduced to GT racing and have more opportunities to use their skills than merely optimising tyre pressures.”
SRO Founder and CEO Stephane Ratel added: “At the SRO Motorsports Group we have always believed in supporting young and upcoming drivers to make their mark in GT racing. That is why we fully embraced the Reiter Young Stars idea. It is an innovative concept and a cost-effective first step in GT racing. Hans Reiter’s experience in GT racing is a certain guarantee for a solid programme.”
While interest has understandably been high a number of spaces are still available. Contact Reiter Engineering for further details: firstname.lastname@example.org