> Sepang’s season finale date now confirmed
> Suzuka moves to avoid CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa clash
The 2023 Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS calendar is now complete following confirmation of Sepang’s season finale date, while Suzuka has moved back two weeks to avoid clashing with the rescheduled CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa.
The latter now takes place on July 15/16, one week before another Mobilityland-owned circuit – Motegi – makes its championship debut.
Suzuka was previously locked in for July 1/2 before changes to the FIA Formula 1 World Championship calendar forced SRO Motorsports Group to move Spa from the end to beginning of July. Asia’s third event of 2023 could not be rescheduled initially. However, championship organisers have worked constructively with Mobilityland to avoid clashing with the world’s biggest GT3 race.
Meanwhile, races 11 and 12 at Sepang will take place on September 23/24. Organisers had already confirmed the final round would be moving to Malaysia for the first time in championship history, although the precise weekend previously remained TBC.
Sepang has staged the opening event of all four Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia campaigns, but that honour will fall to Chang International Circuit next season when Thailand returns to the calendar for the first time since 2019.
The series then moves on to Fuji for the first of four events that also count towards the Fanatec Japan Cup. Suzuka, Motegi and Okayama complete the summer stretch before Sepang closes out Season Five.
Official testing will continue to take place on the Thursday or Friday before most events, while the existing driver class format is unlikely to alter.
However, there will be a renewed focus on GT2 cars, which are eligible to but do not currently compete in the championship.
Benjamin Franassovici, Championship General Manager: “We are pleased to have finalised Sepang’s date and, moreover, to have also avoided a clash with Spa. SRO was able to re-jig many of its calendars to account for that unexpected change in September but the logistics in Asia and availability of our circuits made things trickier for us. Mobilityland has been very supportive in that regard, while the concept of running back-to-back events was proven at Suzuka and Fuji earlier this year.
“More widely, the overall championship and Fanatec Japan Cup both already look promising for 2023. Laying the groundwork this season, when post-pandemic conditions were not 100% conducive for organising a regional series in Asia, has stood us in good stead. And I am also hopeful that we might even see the return of some Chinese teams and drivers, despite of the logistical challenges.”
REVISED 2023 FANATEC GT WORLD CHALLENGE ASIA POWERED BY AWS CALENDAR
May 13/14 – Chang International Circuit – 2x 1hr races
June 17/18 – Fuji International Speedway – 2x 1hr races (Fanatec Japan Cup)
July 15/16 – Suzuka International Circuit – 2x 1hr races (Fanatec Japan Cup)
July 22/23 – Motegi – 2x 1hr races (Fanatec Japan Cup)
August 19/20 – Okayama International Circuit – 2x 1hr races (Fanatec Japan Cup)
September 23/24 – Sepang International Circuit – 2x 1hr races