|Stick a fork in those series|
Blancpain has ended its sponsorship deal with SRO Motorsports Group, which will see the Swiss watchmaker’s name no longer associated as the entitlement sponsor of the Blancpain GT Series and GT World Challenge series in America, Europe and Asia.
It was announced by SRO Motorsports Group founder and CEO Stephane Ratel during Sunday evening’s awards night in Las Vegas.
No replacement has been named at this time for either GT World Challenge or Sports Club, which Blancpain had also sponsored.
Ratel paid tribute to Blancpain, which had been a founding partner of the Blancpain Endurance Series in 2011, during the awards night with a special video as well as comments from Blancpain Vice President Andrea Caputo.
“We have so been so much more than a single sponsorship," Caputo said. “We have invested funds and lots of positive energy to contribute to the creation of the series, from multiple points of view, as a sponsor, a hospitality manager, as a team and driver in our CEO Marc Hayek.
“We’re very proud to have worked hand-in-hand with SRO and with the excellent spirit of cooperation in the transformation of what started with a five-race European championship for gentlemen drivers to a world championship on three continents and more than 20 races per season and regularly 50 cars on the grid.
“As we all know the world is changing. After ten years of intense and positive relationship, the series has grown and is in expert hands. It’s time for us to move on."
Caputo said Blancpain will be shifting its sponsorship and support to the exploration of key preservation of the seas, which has become “more and more" important to the Swiss watchmaker in recent years.