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Feb 01, 2013 - 06:24 AM
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FIA WTCC Newsletter 5
Posted by: newsla on Feb 01, 2013 - 06:21 AM
Sports Cars
FIA WTCC Newsletter 5


WTCC AUDIENCE EXCEEDS THE 500 MILLION MARK

Mission accomplished! WTCC’s most ambitious goal for the past season was to break its record TV audience and exceed the 500 million of viewers worldwide.

 

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This goal was achieved, according to the final report issued by IFM, the Germany-based sports research firm.

In 2012, 144 TV channels aired at least one of the WTCC events and this amounted to 1081 hours of broadcasting hours.
A total of 512 million viewers watched WTCC on TV, which represented a 12% increase compared to 2011 figures.

Ulrich Lacher, Managing Director of IFM, explained: “Despite the Olympics and Euro 2012, WTCC – unlike many other series – increased in audiences and overall impact again. It showed a healthy increase, continuing the trend from previous years. We reckon that the growing popularity is a result of the good TV distribution of the series, which expanded beyond pan-continental broadcasters like Eurosport and Star Sports.”

Antonios Argyropoulos, Head of Media Rights Distribution, Eurosport Events, commented: “WTCC achieved another record and exceeded the mark of half-billion viewers. The championship’s TV coverage included regular programming in Europe, the Americas, Japan and the Asia-Pacific regions through 144 broadcasters and reached 180 countries around the world. This proved that WTCC it is not only an entertaining sporting show, but also a powerful communication platform, thanks to quality programmes and extensive television coverage.”

LAUNCH OF THE MARRAKECH EVENT

The WTCC Race of Morocco that will take place at Marrakech’s circuit Moulay El Hassan on April 7, was launched Monday evening during a press conference at Casablanca’s Sofitel Tour Blanche.

In front of a large representative of local media, the event promoter Aly Horma said that “The City of Marrakech is very proud to welcome the WTCC for the fourth time.”

Mohammed Ouzzine, Minister for Youth and Sports pointed out that: “The WTCC event has a strong impact on the city. It has been estimated that the direct economic impact in 2012 was of 220 million Dirham (around 18 million euro). And on top of this, the interest of the media is aroused by the improving performance of Mehdi Bennani who last year became the first Moroccan driver to claim a podium result in an FIA world championship.”

Lahcen Haddad, Minister of Tourism echoed: “The WTCC and its worldwide TV coverage grant an extraordinary promotion to the city of Marrakech. The stream of tourism that follows this event is very important. A lot of people come for the race and then stay a few days longer.”

WTCC promoter Marcello Lotti concluded: “Marrakech is one of the most popular venues for all the people who work in and around WTCC. The atmosphere we find here is unique and we can feel that the local people welcome us heartily.”

WTCC DRIVERS WARM UP IN GT RACING

WTCC are warming up for the upcoming season by taking part in long distance races at the wheel of GT cars.

The Liqui Moly Team Engstler are heading to Australia, where they will compete in the Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour race that takes place on February 10. The German outfit will run a BMW Z4 GT3 car; team principal and WTCC race winner Franz Engstler will be one of the four racers to share driving duties. Engstler’s WTCC team mate Charles Ng from Hong Kong will be part of the team, together with local driver John Modystach and Kristian Poulsen from Denmark, the winner of 2011 WTCC Yokohama Trophy.
2013 WTCC champion Rob Huff and Hong Kong’s Darryl O’Young are also expected to take part in the Australian race.

Last weekend WTCC newcomers Marc Basseng and Markus Winkelhock competed in the Daytona 24 Hours at the wheel of identical Audi R8 cars run by APR Motorsport. Basseng finished the Florida enduro in second position of the GT class, teaming with Baas, Stippler and Rast, while Winkelhock was classified in seventh place. O’Young was also racing at Daytona, where he claimed second position in the GX Class in a Porsche Cayman.

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