2023-24 Super Sprint MotorSport New Zealand Championship calendar released
In a landmark move the promoters of the Super Sprint MotorSport New Zealand Championship have announced the 2023-24 calendar before the current season has started.
The 2024 summer race series comprises eight events including a return to Christchurch’s Mike Pero Motorsport Park at Ruapuna. The championship calendar will be headlined by the Castrol Toyota Racing Series (featuring the New Zealand Grand Prix) and Toyota 86 Series.
Other categories will contest select rounds including GT New Zealand and D1NZ – New Zealand’s premier drift class.
The 2023-24 calendar kicks off at Taupo International MotorSport on 24-26 November 2023 before the holiday break. The championship then roars back into life again at Taupo for the opening round of the Toyota Racing Series, combining with the popular Historic Grand Prix event the circuit has hosted in recent years.
Round three will then take place at Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon on 26-28 January before heading north to Hampton Downs the following weekend. Mike Pero Motorsport Park Ruapuna will play host to round five of the Super Sprint Championship and act as the penultimate round of the Toyota Racing Series on 9-11 February.
The 68th New Zealand Grand Prix will then move to its ninth new venue, combining with the final round of the Toyota Racing Series at Highlands Motorsport Park on 16-18 February.
Hampton Downs and Manfeild will round out the 2023-24 calendar on 15-17 March and 19-21 April respectively.
“We’re really pleased to see the calendar for next season out early, providing certainty for all our stakeholders and giving everyone a solid plan to work towards for next season,” said Elton Goonan, MotorSport New Zealand CEO.
“We’re equally thrilled to confirm that Highlands will host the 68th New Zealand Grand Prix, marking 17 years since the Grand Prix was last held in the South Island. Highlands is a remarkable facility and we’re excited to see the event create a new chapter there.
“It’s great to see the work Brendon and his team have done in trying to minimise some of the date clashes we’ve seen in recent years, starting in the North Island and combining with Taupo’s Historic Grand Prix is a great step forward for the sport.”
Part of the motivation for releasing the calendar is creating a cornerstone for the next generation of champions.
“This brings stability to our fans, drivers, stakeholders and venues – where they can plan and know our product of live television and entertainment is secure,” said Brendon White – managing director of the Super Sprint MotorSport New Zealand Championship.
The calendar was announced at the 2023 pre-season meet and greet of teams, category managers and stakeholders, held at the iconic International Motorsports team venue, Grey Lynn, Auckland.
“The work on putting this together, navigating past date clashes and other large events, allows teams like International Motorsport to commit to their customers and in turn make plans and preparations.”
Also confirmed was the venue change for the New Zealand Grand Prix – moving from the North Island location of Hampton Downs to the South Island venue of Highlands Motorsport Park.
“This has been on our radar for a very long time,” said Josie Spillane, Chief Executive Officer of Highlands Motorsport Park.
“It feels like an amazing moment for us to not only have one of our circuits host the Grand Prix but to have it at Highlands. We believe there is so much mana and heritage and privilege being able to run a New Zealand Grand Prix. We are very proud to work with Toyota, stakeholders and the Super Sprint MotorSport New Zealand series to hold and deliver such a significant event that has the glitz and glamour this Grand Prix deserves.”
The first round of the 2023 season begins on 13 January at the Highlands Motorsport Park – the first of eight for the new and live-televised series.
Tickets for the 2023 season will be available through ticketing agent https://www.ticketfairy.com
2023-24 Calendar – Super Sprint MotorSport New Zealand Championship
R1 24-26 November 2023 Taupō Motorsport Park
R2 (TRS R1) 19-21 January 2024 Taupō Motorsport Park (Historic GP)
R3 (TRS R2) 26-28 January 2024 Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon
R4 (TRS R3) 2-4 February 2024 Hampton Downs Motorsport Park
R5 (TRS R4) 9-11 February 2024 Mike Pero Motorsport Park Ruapuna
R6 (TRS R5) 16-18 February 2024 Highlands Motorsport Park (NZ Grand Prix)
R7 15-17 March 2024 Hampton Downs Motorsport Park
R8 19-21 April 2024 Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon