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Toyota Racing Series

The Toyota Racing Series is New Zealand's premier "open-wheeler" motorsport category. The Series includes races for every major trophy in New Zealand circuit racing including the New Zealand Motor Cup and the Denny Hulme Memorial Trophy. The cars are also the category for the New Zealand Grand Prix – one of only two races in the world with FIA approval to use the Grand Prix nomenclature outside Formula One.

Toyota Racing Series
Toyota Racing Series.jpg
Toyota Racing Series
CategoryOpen-wheeler racing
CountryNew Zealand
Inaugural season2005
Drivers16 (2019)
Teams4 (2019)
Engine suppliersToyota
Tyre suppliersHankook
Drivers' championNew Zealand Liam Lawson
Teams' championM2 Competition
Motorsport current event.svg Current season


Toyota Racing Management
Hampton Downs, Auckland
Area served
New Zealand
Key people
Nico Caillol
Sarah Brown

The Toyota Racing Series is an incubator and showcase for the next generation of New Zealand racing talent. The Series offers emerging drivers the chance to gain valuable experience with carbon-fibre composite chassis, aerodynamics and slick tyres.

The Series has the full endorsement of Motorsport New Zealand, the sport's governing body. Until the beginning of 2017, the series was managed by Toyota Racing Management a company under the leadership of Barrie Thomlinson.

Previously, the country's leading drivers had to go offshore to step up to this level. High profile graduates from the series to date include Brendon Hartley, formerly in Formula One with Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda, and Earl Bamber.[1] The series has also seen the likes of Daniil Kvyat, Will Stevens, Lance Stroll and Lando Norris compete on their way to Formula One.

For 2008, the series has also gone "green". Fuels for all cars racing in the series are now an E85 biofuel blend of 85 per cent ethanol made from whey, a dairy industry by-product; and petrol. Reduced emissions, reduced carbon "footprint" and reduced use of fossil fuels are all being showcased in this unique New Zealand programme. The 2008 New Zealand Grand Prix thus becomes the first ever biofuel grand prix in the world.

The short summer series (five weekends in five weeks, all in January and February) during the Southern Hemisphere summer has made the series attractive to development drivers from the Northern Hemisphere, as the series takes place during the off-season, serving as single-seater motorsport's equivalent of professional baseball's "winter ball" leagues in the Caribbean and Australia. Drivers from both Europe and the Americas actively participate in the series, as it allows them to develop their skills in an atmosphere similar to the winter ball leagues. A June 2019 FIA World Motor Sport Council decision now allows development drivers to tally Toyota Racing Series with their regular series towards FIA Super Licence points required to be in a Formula One car, meaning the driver can participate in this series, then participate in a series that starts after the end of the Toyota Racing Series, and accumulate points from both series towards F1 approval. [2]



Toyota Racing Series Car Engine

The Toyota Racing Series runs a Tatuus FT-50 chassis with modified versions of 1.8L Toyota four cylinder 2ZZ-GE production engines which can produce 200bhp, a six speed Sadev sequential transmission with limited slip differential with a carbon fibre body and a Carbon monocoque chassis built by Tatuus in Italy to full FIA F3 specification.[3] The cars use Michelin S308 tyres (Front 20x54x13, Rear 24x57x13) and weigh approximately 480 kg.

For the 2020 season, the Toyota Racing Series will switch to a new chassis called Tatuus FT-60, identical to the T-318 used in Europe, whereas the new engine will be a 2.0L turbocharged unit developing 270bhp.

Points systemEdit

Each championship round consists of three races, one on Saturday afternoon, one on Sunday morning and the final on Sunday afternoon.

Position 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th 13th 14th 15th 16th 17th 18th 19th 20th 21st 22nd 23rd 24th 25th 26th 27th 28th 29th 30th
Points 75 67 60 54 49 45 42 39 36 33 30 28 26 24 22 20 18 16 14 12 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1



Season Champion Team Car
2005   Brent Collins Brent Collins Motorsport Tatuus TT104ZZ
2005–06   Daniel Gaunt International Motorsport
2006–07   Daniel Gaunt International Motorsport
2007–08   Andy Knight Knight Motorsport
2008–09   Mitch Cunningham Giles Motorsport
2010   Mitch Evans Giles Motorsport
2011   Mitch Evans Giles Motorsport
2012   Nick Cassidy Giles Motorsport
2013   Nick Cassidy M2 Competition
2014   Andrew Tang Neale Motorsport
2015   Lance Stroll M2 Competition Tatuus FT-50
2016   Lando Norris M2 Competition
2017   Thomas Randle Victory Motor Racing
2018   Robert Shwartzman M2 Competition
2019   Liam Lawson M2 Competition


The winner of the feature race of each round in the championship is awarded a trophy:

  1. Lady Wigram Trophy
  2. The Spirit of the Nation Cup
  3. The NZ Motor Cup
  4. Denny Hulme Memorial Trophy
  5. Dan Higgins Trophy
  6. The New Zealand Grand Prix Trophy

The overall winner of the championship (based on championship points) receives the Chris Amon Trophy[5]


  1. ^ "Toyota - Toyota Racing New Zealand". Retrieved 2015-03-12.
  2. ^ FIA World Motor Sport Council June 2019
  3. ^ "Toyota - Toyota Racing New Zealand". Retrieved 2015-03-12.
  4. ^ "Toyota - Toyota Racing New Zealand". Retrieved 2015-03-12.
  5. ^ "Toyota Racing Series: Feature Race Trophies". Toyota NZ. Retrieved 2017-01-15.

External linksEdit