The WTCC Race of China will take place on November 6 at the Shanghai Tianma Circuit, in a joint event with the China Touring Car Championship’s final race meeting.
Following the decision to move the WTCC and CTCC race meeting from the Guangdong International Circuit to Shanghai, the first option for the promoters of both championships was to race at the Shanghai International Circuit. However, as the Formula One venue was already booked for the first weekend in November, they opted for Shanghai’s other racetrack.
The Shanghai Tianma Circuit was inaugurated in 2004 and has already hosted several rounds of the China Touring Car and Superbike Championships. It is located in the Sheshan Songjiang district, in the Western outskirts of Shanghai.
The circuit has already been licensed by the FIA for Touring Car competitions.
The Shanghai Tianma Circuit will be home to the WTCC Race of China
A CHEVROLET FOR TOSHI ARAI AT SUZUKA
Toshihiro Arai, one of Japan’s most successful rally drivers ever, will make his racing debut in the World Touring Car Championship’s event at Suzuka, on October 23.
The 45-year old Arai will be at the wheel of a fourth Chevrolet Cruze 1.6T run by the Chevrolet-RML team, alongside regular drivers Yvan Muller, Rob Huff and Alain Menu. The team had already fielded a fourth car earlier this year, when Brazilian Stockcar star Carlos "Cacá" Bueno finished third and fourth in his home races at Curitiba.
During the latest twenty years Arai built himself a solid reputation as a competitive rallyman, always driving Subaru cars in the World Rally Championship. The peaks of his career were two FIA Production Car World Rally Championship titles in 2005 and 2007.
Arai was given the opportunity to test the WTCC Cruze last Thursday at Pembrey, UK.
"I was extremely pleased with the test," he said "The Cruze is pleasant to drive and very responsive, and the team extremely professional. I am delighted to have the opportunity to race my home WTCC event and to do it with Chevrolet. This will be a new experience for me, but the philosophy of WTCC and WRC Production Cars is the same and I hope I can adapt quickly. To debut in the WTCC with the Cruze and the reigning World Champion team is the best proposition one could dream of!"
Japanese rallyman Toshihiro Arai will join WTCC at Suzuka with Chevrolet
JAVIER VILLA IN GP2 TEST AT JEREZ
Proteam Racing driver Javier Villa was invited by the Super Nova team to the GP2 test that will take place this weekend at Jerez de la Frontera.
The young Spaniard, who is currently fighting for the WTCC Yokohama Trophy title on his first Touring Car season, is very pleased to rejoin his former team.
"It was a welcome invitation that I am very pleased to accept," he said. "It is more than a year and a half since I last raced in GP2, but the teams continue relying on me. After the shakedown of the new Dallara I did for Arden last year, which went very well, I’ve now got this new chance to drive a single-seater."
MULLER RETURNS TO THE FRENCH RALLY
This weekend WTCC reigning champion and current point leader Yvan Muller will take part once again in the French round of the World Rally Championship. During last year’s maiden appearance on the roads of his home region, Muller was very impressive, running consistently among the top drivers.
Due to fuel feeding problems to his Citroën Xsara WRC, he achieved only the 42nd position in the final classification, however he was able to clock some brilliant times in the special stages, a sixth in SS20 being his best.
This year Muller returns to the Rallye de France Alsace, sharing a Peugeot 207 S2000 with co-driver Guy Lenevau.