PURE ETCR’s all-new starting gate had its World premiere today with a thrilling demonstration event at Motorland Aragón, Spain.
The structure, which stretches across the width of the racetrack, will be used instead of traditional starting lights when the world’s first all-electric multi-brand touring car championship kicks off in 2021, was the starting point for the series’ on-track debut today.
The gate provides a dramatic starting spot for all PURE ETCR battles. Drivers are drawn randomly into Battle groups at the start of each event and square up against each other in a knock-out format.
Each gate contains an animated LED screen presenting the driver waiting to unleash the power of their car. When the gate opens – after a random amount of time – it’s all about reaction with the fastest driver off the line getting an instant advantage over his rivals.
What follows next is a flat-out, 10km Battle with the world’s best touring car drivers battling for every inch of racetrack as they aim to be first across the finish line, with no margin for error and a crucial victory the reward for the fastest competitor.
A simulation was carried out with Hyundai’s brand-new Veloster N ETCR – the first car to be fully integrated with the ETCR technical kit – pitched against the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup-winning i30 N TCR to showcase the impressive acceleration of the electric machine.
Reigning WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup Champion Norbert Michelisz had the honour of putting the Veloster N ETCR through its paces.
His fellow Hyundai WTCR drivers Gabriele Tarquini and Luca Engstler drove the pair of i30 N TCRs in opposition. All three returned to the circuit later for a spectacular sunset showdown, the results of which will be broadcast on November 24.*
Norbert Michelisz said: “It’s really cool sitting there being three-wide with such a small gap between the cars. When the proper Battles start, I think it could be incredible action. I’m excited to see it already. The launch is then amazing too. I think it’s something that fans are going to enjoy watching a lot.”
Xavier Gavory, PURE ETCR Series Director, said: “Today is a very significant day for PURE ETCR as we revealed our starting gate, which will provide a completely unique sight in international circuit racing. It has been almost a year in concept and development and we’re extremely proud to be able to showcase it here in Motorland Aragón.
*Full broadcast details to be announced at a later date.