The Gulf Western Oil Touring Car Masters has confirmed its plans to adjust the category rulebook ahead 2022.
With just one round remaining in this year’s season, category organisers have been hard at work reviewing the sporting and technical regulations and have since identified their planned changes to grow the category.
The main change will effect the existing class makeup, with new structured criteria to simplify the category and encourage older-specification TCM cars to return to the series.
There will be no specific changes to the current ProMaster, ProAm and ProSports system currently in place, however the category will introduce a more definitive, performance-based driver seeding system.
The ProAm and ProMasters will be intertwined with drivers able to move classes mid-season pending their results, while the ProSports class will shift to more of a standalone class open for older cars with little recent racing experience.
While all three classes will share the grid in 2022, ProSports competitors are likely to start toward the back of the grid to avoid any incidents.
With the category working alongside Motorsport Australia in refining the regulations, TCM Category Manager Liam Curkpatrick was hopeful the new changes could help rejuvenate the series.
“The feedback we’ve received is that the advancement of the cars currently competing at the front of the TCM pack has seen several existing car owners elect to park their cars for fears of being uncompetitive, which is understandable,” Curkpatrick explained.
“The revised ProSports structure will be designed to allow those cars to compete for their own class honours within the broader TCM field.
“While it is tagged an ‘invitational’ class, ProSports would be first designed to bring existing TCM machinery back to the track rather than, for example, attracting Group N competitors and vehicles.
“That is not our goal and this exercise has not been about filling the grid for the sake of it.
“It’s about making a serious effort to cater to the people who have existing cars sitting in garages, and then looking at people who are interested in joining the category and have appropriate machinery to do so.
“We have also had several enquiries from people with cars that are very close to TCM specification already.
“The cars invited competing in ProSport will be approved by the category before competing and will run as close to our rules as possible, including running the control Hoosier tyre.
“It’s not designed to be a free-for-all, rather a cost-effective and common-sense way of getting people back on track yet still being able to compete for a trophy.”
The finalised 2022 TCM series regulations will be released in the coming months.