2023 Castrol TRS set for return to normal
International single seater racing should be back in New Zealand in 2023 – that’s the message from TOYOTA GAZOO Racing New Zealand.
News from Government that borders to international travellers will be open by October this year – and possibly even earlier – has been welcomed by TGRNZ. Their team is already deep into planning the 2023 season and is confident it will be the first since 2020 to feature the best of both domestic and international up and coming single seater stars.
It is also hoped 2023 will bring a return to a full 20 car grid and five rounds of intense competition over five weekends.
“The championship has been badly hit by the international COVID-19 travel restrictions but we can see light at the end of the tunnel for 2023 now,” said TGRNZ Motorsport, TRS Category & Operations Manager Nicolas Caillol.
“We are already talking to a large number of drivers, driver managers and teams and they are delighted to hear that the Castrol Toyota Racing Series is back on the international racing calendar and beyond.
“Our entire team has worked hard not only to maintain the cars through this dormant period, but to also continue to run our testing and development programme and to give a number of young Kiwis testing mileage in the car as they endeavour to further their single seater racing careers abroad in very challenging times.”
Igor Fraga won the last full international championship in 2020 beating team mate Liam Lawson to the title. In 2021 Matthew Payne won a three round championship very much focussed on a highly successful one-off NZ Grand Prix that also featured stars like Shane van Gisbergen, Greg Murphy and Andre Heimgartner.
Travel restrictions due to the emergence of the Omicron variant forced the cancellation of the entire championship in 2022.