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Race Worthy: A Great Opportunity to Shine

On any given race weekend, it can be tough for even the most avid racing fan to keep up with all the racing related events happening throughout the world. Various time constraints and time zone differences often force people into choosing one race over another for that weekend, despite being a fan of both series. Missing out on undiscovered gems or devoting time to a lackluster race that really wasn’t worth watching relative to what else was happening that weekend can be extremely frustrating.

Enter “Race Worthy”, a weekly column dedicated to informing readers on what upcoming races or racing related events are worth prioritizing their time for and why. I emphasize why because that is where the true heart of this column lies. Whether one agrees or disagrees with the contributor, it can be very refreshing and interesting to discover what it is that makes that event, series, etc seem so valuable to that person. In some cases, this perspective may help cultivate a greater sense of enjoyment and appreciation from the reader whenever they do watch that particular racing series.

As stated above, we don’t want this column to be from our perspective alone. So we plan on including the opinions of fellow racing enthusiasts from all around the world as well. If you are interested in contributing your opinion on what upcoming race or event is worth watching, then email us at theracingedge1@gmail.com with the title “Race Worthy”. Be sure to include your name, affiliation (if any), and nationality. We plan to post on every Thursday or Friday leading into a race weekend.

Well with that out of the way lets take a look at what is going on this Easter weekend. Fans have been spoiled the past two weekends with races such as the 12 hours of Sebring, the controversial Formula One, dramatic NASCAR finishes, WTCC wet races, etc. It was exciting, but a complete overload at the same time. Personally, a break is welcome and that is what we are seeing this weekend. The major players are sitting out this weekend, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t which gives the opportunity for the lower tier leagues to shine. So without further ado, here are my top picks.

British Touring Car Championship @ Brands Hatch (Round One)
This is a no brainer folks. It goes without saying that touring car racing produces some of the most exciting wheel to wheel battles in auto racing, but the British Touring Car Championship steps it up to a whole other level in my book. I have been watching the BTCC since 2007 and I have yet to see a race that wasn’t exciting in some way or another. Personally, I find it far more exciting than the World Touring Car Championship. Don’t get me wrong, the WTCC has it’s own unique merits but the atmosphere of the BTCC beats it hands down. Perhaps this is due to the series possessing all the right elements that compose a great touring car championship: likable driver personalities, tense rivalries, top notch TV coverage, and a diverse field of cars from a variety of manufacturers and configurations (FWD, RWD, etc)

2013 will see a record 32 cars on the field

2013 will see a record 32 cars on the field

This weekend’s opening round at Brands Hatch Indy configuration will mark the start of a highly anticipated season that ushers in the third year of the cost efficient and turbo boosted Next Generation Touring Car (NGTC), although there will still be Super 2000 (S2000) spec cars on track as well. However,the most exciting thing about this season is the field itself. The entry list is at a record 32 cars consisting of 13 car models and 11 different manufacturers. Honda, Vauxhall, Ford, BMW, Volkswagen, SEAT, Toyota, MG, Chevrolet, Proton, and Audi will all be present at this race. For those of you who are new to BTCC, you should expect plenty of intense wheel to wheel battles with a very lenient penalty system that brings a whole new meaning to the phrase “Rubbing is racing.”  Some folks may be snobby towards that concept, but I find it to be exciting as long as it is fair.

So here is a quick rundown on why the BTCC will be the one to watch this weekend:

  • Opening round of the 2013 season
  • Record setting 32 car field with a variety of manufacturers and specification standards.
  • 32 cars at the Indy configuration of the Brands Hatch will ensure a consistent state of racing chaos throughout the race.
  • Exciting wheel to wheel battles
  • Each round consists of 3 races
  • Today’s qualifying took place during a brief snow shower (first time I have ever seen that!)

FIA GT1 Series @ The Nogaro Circuit (Round One)

The FIA GT series is one that is often forgotten, which is a shame, because the GT series is actually quite an exciting series that is very accessible. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to watch this because of my eagerness to see nine time WRC champion Sebastien Loeb try his hand at GT sports cars. The winners of the Gran Turismo GT Academy competition shall be competing in this series as well. In all seriousness, this is a fun series to watch that is also one of the easiest to access. Full races, previews, reviews, etc are available through the website and youtube channel. If you love high end sports cars of the GT variety, then this is definitely a series worth watching.  The cars are beautiful, the tracks challenging, and the racing top notch.


 

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Categories: Touring Cars
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