Regular viewers of the World Touring Car Championship will be all too aware of the Chevrolet Cruze steamroller. Since SEAT and BMW both pulled their manufacturer support at the end of 2010, the American giant has been almost unstoppable, dropping just six wins from 38 starts to date
Now it has been revealed that the 2012 season will be the last for Chevrolet in WTCC, the manufacturer citing ‘a strategic review of motorsport and marketing programs’ as the reason for the withdrawal.
As the rest of the field heaves a hearty sigh of relief, one does wonder what drivers Alain Menu, Rob Huff and three-time series Champion Yvan Muller will make of the news.
Between them they have racked up over 57 of the marque’s 59 series victories. Indeed, Menu and Huff have been staunch Chevrolet drivers since the WTCC was re-inaugurated in 2005, and while they have been unable to fell relative newboy Muller from his Championship perch, they have been instrumental in securing the team two Team’s Championships and three 3rd places in the standings.
The chances of Chevrolet signing off with another two Championships under its belt – given the current state of competition in the WTCC – is looking increasingly likely, though quite what arenas GM has in its sights for the Chevy bowtie (endurance racing? GTs? DTM?) remains to be seen.
Shots courtesy of fiawtcc.com