Not exactly the way you want to be crowned champion.
Markus Winkelhock was named the drivers’ champion of the 2017 IGTC after the upcoming December championship race in Sepang was canceled due to lack of entries.
The organizer of the race, Stephane Ratel Organization, said they failed to reach the 20-car entry target, so canceling the race was the only sensible thing to do.
“Canceling suitably ahead of time is therefore considered a more responsible option than staging a high-profile endurance race below capacity,” said SRO’s Benjamin Franassovici.
SRO blamed low interest from teams on several factors. Poor fan attendance for the Sepang race the previous two years had teams questioning whether it was worth the expense to travel there. Plus, organizers had announced the race was moving next year to Suzuka, and suspect that affected the number of Japanese teams deciding to participate.
Probably a big factor for car makers was that Audi had the manufacturer title wrapped up regardless the race’s outcome, so why spend money on a race that essentially means nothing.
SRO says the race will be revamped for next year and become part of a new series called the Asian Pacific 36.