In an exclusive interview with ‘Leadlap.net’, race director of the V8 Oval Series Maik Barten talks about the reformation of the racing series and the possible expansion of the race calendar
On September 29, the prestigious V8 Oval Series’ EuroCup is at stake at Raceway Venray. Unlike the two championship races on Sunday, which are also scheduled, the EuroCup race will not be counting towards the championship. Accordingly, it is all or nothing for the drivers, which makes the EuroCup contest highly anticipated. In the run-up to the event, V8 Oval Series’ race director Maik Barten spoke to ‘Leadlap.net’.
Chris Liemann (CL): “At the beginning of the year there was some restructuring within the race series and organisation. What was the reason behind that?”
Maik Barten (MB): “First of all we wanted to take the series to a higher level. With the rebranding to ‘V8 Oval Series’ we also had the opportunity to start the official Dutch championship. All in all, everything should become more professional, we also now have much improved marketing possibilities with the series.”
CL: “However, the Dutch championship only started with the second race weekend in April. What caused the delay?”
MB: “In March for the season opener we unfortunately did not have a KNAF [Dutch Automobile Association] representative at trackside, so our hands were bound. Consequently, this year we have two classifications, namely the track championship [starting with the first race weekend] and the Dutch championship. Next year the Dutch Championship will certainly start with the season opener”.
The V8 Oval Series as a development platform
CL: “What are your medium-term goals with the V8 Oval Series?”
MB: “One of the points is that we want to significantly increase brand awareness. Beside that we want to become the perfect link and development platform for the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series (NWES). With Gil Linster, Loris Hezemans and Giorgio Maggi it already proved to work, just to name a few.”
CL: “What would you say makes this race series appealing to fans and drivers?”
MB: “We basically have a very narrow field, which is encouraged by the reverse grid principle. This guarantees exciting races. Otherwise, the V8 Oval Series is perfect for experiencing the NASCAR feeling on a comparatively small budget.”
Possible extension of the race calendar to Meppen
CL: “Currently the race series is exclusively running at Raceway Venray. What are the chances of more venues being added to the race calendar in the future?”
MB: “There are no concrete plans for this at the moment. In Meppen, however, a wonderful track has been built! Maybe that would be something for the future of the V8 Oval Series.”
CL: “Last but not least, two race days before the end of the season, we already have seen many exciting races. What has been your personal highlight so far?”
MB: “It’s not that easy to pick because we have indeed had plenty exciting races. But if I have to decide, then I say: The battle for victory at the WorldCup weekend between Charles Lacarre and Ralph Verberkt! The two have fought door-to-door with each other lap after lap while still being respectful to the other on track. That’s what the V8 Oval Series is all about!”