Q&A: Nicolas Deschaux, President of the CIK-FIA
FREE ENGINES AND TYRES IN THE CIK-FIA «U18» WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP!
At its meeting on 11 December 2009 the World Motor Sport Council ratified the calendar of the new CIK-FIA ‘U18’ Karting World Championship and Karting Academy Trophy. At the same meeting the World Council decided on the tenders for the sole suppliers to the CIK-FIA Karting Championships.
Nicolas Deschaux, who was appointed as the new President of the CIK-FIA in October 2009, talks here about his first few weeks in the role and comments on the decisions of the World Council, which will bring in huge cost savings for the sport and its competitors.
Can you describe your start as President of the CIK-FIA?
«At the end of October I came into office, dealt with current affairs and met the members of the CIK-FIA staff operating in Geneva. I was pleased to find an efficient and competent team. The first step was to carry through the application of the principles previously adopted by the CIK-FIA with regard to the direct topics of the forthcoming season and fully in line with this principle of cost reduction which is of major importance for our sport. I am still in a period of discovery of the problems involved and of dialogue. I have obviously opened discussions with the main actors of Karting and shall continue to discuss in particular with the Manufacturers and Organisers in the coming weeks. Further to these discussions, I shall be in a position to draw up an inventory of the situation and with the contribution of the Commission we shall bring out the main lines of conceivable development and top priorities of action.»
In June 2009, the World Council gave the green light to the CIK-FIA to launch a new World Championship. This has progressed to the next phase with the announcement of the calendar. How is this programme coming along?
«Most of the 2010 calendar of the CIK-FIA Championships was already voted in October. It was then a question of granting the so-called traditional Championships, for the Super KF, KF2, KF3, KZ1 and KZ2 categories, the climax of which will naturally be the World Super KF Championship, to be held on 19 September at Zuera, in Spain. We still had to propose to the World Council a calendar for the new «U18″ World Championship. A call for candidatures was issued to the ASNs, and seven circuits declared that they were prepared to host this competition, additionally supported by the CIK-FIA Academy Trophy. These seven candidatures were for the CIK-FIA a very encouraging initial sign which bears witness to the ASNs’ interest for this concept. The members of the CIK-FIA proceeded to a vote to select three Organisers, and the World Council has validated their choice. The Championship will start on 25 July in Germany, at Wackersdorf. It will then continue on 29 August in Spain, at Alcaniz, and will finish in France at the circuit of Val d’Argenton on 3 October. These are high-level circuits which additionally have the advantage of comprising infrastructures appropriate for the conducting of our Friday mornings education programme.»
The World Council also had to make choices amongst the proposals submitted within the framework of the various tenders.
«Indeed, and the effects of these invitations to tender are going to be appreciated by the competitors entered in the CIK-FIA Championships. Just consider that the racing tyres to be supplied by Dunlop and Vega in most of the KF2, KF3, KZ1 and KZ2 competitions will be handed for free to all the Drivers! It will also be the case in our new World Championship and Academy. Furthermore, the Council had to designate the supplier of the complete kart for the Academy and of the engine for the «U18″ World Championship. Again, many offers were received, the most spectacular of which have been retained: those of the Parolin company, which offers free equipment to all the Drivers who will enter these championships in the next three years! One of the three objectives of these new competitions was cost reduction. It has been reached beyond all expectations. To compete in the World Championship, the Drivers will not have to lay out a single euro, either for their engines or for their tyres.»
Can you remind us of the main goals of these new Championships?
«There are three: accessibility, youth and education. The younger ones, 13 to 15 year-olds, will perform within the framework of the CIK-FIA Karting Academy Trophy on identical karts supplied «ready for use». As for 15 to 18 years old Drivers, they will do the CIK-FIA World Championship with chassis of their own choice, but submitted to technical restrictions aimed at reducing costs and balancing everyone’s chances. Tyres will be identical for all, as will engines, which will be allocated at each event by drawing lots. With the contribution of the Motor Sport Safety Development Fund, the CIK will add a totally original pedagogical aspect to the programme of each of the three races.»
Don’t you think there should be a balance between the traditional Championships and the new ones?
«At the CIK-FIA, each Championship is justified. Both concepts will be treated independently, without any interference. The existing Championships, from Super KF to KF3, and those for gearbox categories will obviously be maintained. One must admit that they are very profesional and very competitive. With the new ‘U18’ Championship and Academy Trophy, the CIK-FIA wants to offer an additional platform, both very affordable and high-level. It is in this perspective that the FIA has decided to give from the start the World Championship status to the under 18 category.»
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