CLIO Cup UK, using the latest ‘Gen 5’ CLIO Cup race car, had due to get underway this month with the first two of seven planned events – five with the British GT Championship plus two more overseas.
The 1.3 turbocharged, 180bhp model can be ordered for competition in 2021’s CLIO Cup from UK Renault Sport importer R.Sport – tel 07733 330421 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The car is priced €37,900 (+ VAT) – around £34,250 (+ VAT) based on current exchange rates.
The decision to postpone 2020’s championship means no CLIO Cup in the UK for the first time since 1999 (although the new car will race in CLIO Cup France and Spain in 2020).
But Renault Sport Racing believes its UK decision – based on discussions with teams who have so far ordered New CLIO Cup cars – is sensible in the current climate and that it can also pay dividends longer-term.
Benoît Nogier, RSR Customer Racing Director, commented: “Renault has enjoyed incredible success with its motorsport programmes in the UK for more than 40 years, particularly with CLIO Cup brand.
“This, therefore, is not a decision that we have taken lightly at all. It is important to stress that our decision is based on feedback from the teams as much as anything else.
“There is no escaping the fact that COVID-19 has had consequences for business models – that includes those of teams in the UK.
“As stakeholders, we have listened carefully to them and, now in July, clearly they would prefer more time to test the New CLIO Cup car being introduced in 2020.”
In response to teams’ requests, Nogier explained that Renault Sport Racing had already started to work behind the scenes to help them better prepare for the 2020/21 winter break in making plans for next season’s racing calendar.
He added: “We have taken what we believe is a responsible decision to help protect their interest and have already put in place the following.
“We are making sure that track time will be reserved at British GT events for teams to test the New CLIO Cup car. This will be at no cost to those teams and drivers taking up this option.
“UK teams are also invited to race their new cars in CLIO Cup France in 2020 to help them gain additional mileage.
“Our ambition is very much to return with a full CLIO Cup UK championship in 2021.
“Our commitment remains as strong as ever to make New CLIO Cup UK as accessible as possible for club racers and novices just as much as career-minded drivers; also to build a sense of mutual regard and community on our grid.”