Formula Two relaunches on Avon

Avon Tyres has been unveiled as the official tyre supplier for the FIA Formula Two Championship, which re-launches in 2009 after a 25-year absence from motorsport.

The championship, which will feature 24 identical cars designed by the Williams F1 team, has been created as the ultimate feeder category for Formula One, while still being affordable for aspiring young drivers. Sixteen races will take place at eight circuits across Europe, from Valencia and Barcelona in Spain to Donington Park and Brands Hatch in the UK.

Headed by Jonathan Palmer, whose MotorSport Vision (MSV) company has used Avon as the control tyre supplier of the Formula Palmer Audi championship since it began in 1998, all the F2 cars will be manufactured to identical specification and run entirely by MSV to ensure driver talent shines through.

The Williams JPH1 F2 car, was unveiled at Brands Hatch on Monday (Mar 2).

“Avon has a history of supplying tyres to F1 feeder championships and we’re proud to continue that tradition,” said Julian Baldwin, Managing Director of Cooper Tire Europe. “After providing tyres to the FIA Formula 3000 series, which replaced the original Formula Two in the 1980s and ran until 2004, we’re very happy to continue an association with the natural stepping-stone to Formula 1.”

The Williams JPH1 will feature a six-speed semi-automatic gearbox and 1.8-litre turbocharged Audi engine that generates 400bhp with an extra “overboost” of 50bhp available to drivers in the races, to help encourage overtaking.

The first round will take place at Valencia, Spain, on 31 May.

2009 FIA Formula Two Championship Calendar

Date -  Circuit31-May Valencia21-Jun Brno28-Jun Spa19-Jul Brands Hatch (GP)16-Aug Donington Park06-Sep Oschersleben20-Sep Imola01-Nov Barcelona

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