The Pure McLaren driver training program has spawned a new one-make race series, with the first round held over the weekend at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps race track.
The FIA-sanctioned series, which rivals the Ferrari Challenge and Lamborghini Super Trofeo series, is organized by the McLaren GT motorsport department of McLaren's road car business and for the inaugural season drivers compete in McLaren's 570S GT4 race car.
Six rounds held across iconic European locations make up the 2018 calendar, with each hosting two races per weekend. A typical round comprises Friday testing with 40-minutes of free practice, 20-minute qualifying sessions and 30-minute races on Saturday and Sunday.
The series is open to McLaren customers only, who require an International D grade licence in order to compete. The cars can be owned or rented, while all transport and maintenance is handled by McLaren, making this an “arrive and drive” affair. Expert trainers are also present to help competitors hone their skills.
Drivers compete in two categories to be contested simultaneously; the Pure McLaren one-make series, which is the overall category open to all competitors; and the Bruce McLaren Cup, named after McLaren founder Bruce McLaren and for drivers who have held their racing licence for less than 12 months and have not competed higher than club level in that specific year.
Below is the full calendar for the 2018 Pure McLaren season:
Round 1: Circuit de Spa Francorchamps, Belgium, April 27-29
Round 2: Circuit Ricardo Tormo, Spain May 18-20
Round 3: Portimao Circuit, Portugal, June 22-24
Round 4: Circuit Paul Ricard, France, July 27-29
Round 5: Hockenheim, Germany, July 29-August 02
Round 6: Silverstone Circuit, UK, September 28-30