MotoGP venue Aragon signs deal to join WTCR for 2020 season
|By Jack Cozens||Wednesday, May 1st 2019, 16:13 GMT|
MotoGP venue Aragon has revealed it will host a round of the World Touring Car Cup from 2020.
The Spanish circuit, which is located in the north east of the country, had been widely tipped to join the WTCR calendar from next season despite no formal announcement being made.
But Aragon announced on Tuesday it had agreed on a deal to host WTCR for three years starting next year, saying the date of its first event would be announced by series promoter Eurosport Events with the reveal of its full 2020 calendar at a later date.
WTCR has made no announcement about a deal, although this is standard procedure.
It will mark the first time World Touring Cars has raced in Spain since the World Touring Car Championship that WTCR succeeded visited Valencia in 2012, although WTCR has used Spanish Grand Prix venue Barcelona as its official pre-season test venue for the past two years.
Designed by Hermann Tilke, Aragon is celebrating its 10th anniversary of opening this year and will host MotoGP for the 10th time in 2019.
It was traditionally visited by Formula Renault 3.5 then Formula V8 3.5 until the series' collapse at the end of 2017.
The TCR Spain Series, which has since become part of TCR Iberico, ran a round at Aragon in 2016.
While Aragon has agreed a three-year term, WTCR's status is only guaranteed until for this year as Eurosport and the FIA's deal with the WSC Group behind TCR regulations is up at the end of 2019.
Malaysia's ex-Formula 1 venue Sepang will host WTCR for the first time this year and also agreed a three-year deal with Eurosport, as part of a double-header with the Endurance World Championship motorcycle series also promoted by the group.
But circuit CEO Dato Razlan Razali told Autosport an extension to WTCR's current lifespan was a caveat to ensuring the length of that agreement is fulfilled.
"In the event something untoward happens, then we would have to review our agreement," said Razali.
"What's important is it has to be world-championship status, and that is very key to our position in selecting this event."