Tomohiko Masuta appointed managing director of Falken and Sumitomo Rubber Europe
Tomohiko Masuta has assumed the position of managing director of both Falken Tyre Europe GmbH and Sumitomo Rubber Europe GmbH.
This year, the ADAC TOTAL 24h race at the Nürburgring is taking place under special circumstances. For the first time in the almost 50-year history of the classic endurance event, it was necessary for the race to be postponed from its original timeslot in May to a new date. The waiting is now over: from 24th until 27th September, what may be the most unusual 24h race in history is set to take place.
Due to the coronavirus, this time, far fewer spectators will be present than the 200,000 fans who usually attend the event each year. This has also resulted in restrictions for Falken. Each year, at a variety of hospitality events, the tyres brand offers more than 400 guests and numerous journalists an exciting weekend of racing. This year, however, all of the sponsorship will be taking place online.
For the first time this season, Falken will be driving two of the latest GT3-Porsche 911 GT3 R in the Nürburgring Endurance Series (formerly VLN) and in the 24h race at the Nürburgring. The Falken motor racing team, which is hitting the starting line together with Schnabl Engineering for the tenth time in a row, has used a new 991.2 chassis, which is used alongside its 2019 Porsche. Both vehicles are identical in terms of their specifications.
“We very much regret that we aren’t able to invite any guests this year. We are therefore offering our fans watching TV at home and our many followers on social media an extensive programme for this very special race. I am very confident that we will also be able to demonstrate the great performance of our tyres and the strength of our brand in the virtual world,” explains Markus Bögner, COO and President of Falken Tyre Europe GmbH, discussing the restrictions.
As one of the leading sponsors of this year’s race, Falken will be responsible for the sponsorship of the live streams, which will broadcast the action from both the pit lane and directly from the race. Falken will also be supporting the TV broadcast on RTL NITRO.
The updates from Falken won’t just be available for the fans on TV and through live streaming, they will also be available online. The Falken team has been updating the fans about the current racing action, the intermediate developments and the results, as well as all the exciting news surrounding the 24h race on the Falken social media channels for more than ten years. This service is also being continued and expanded for this race so as to inform the fans about all events at the Nürburgring in the best possible way.
It isn’t just the social media team from Falken which will be active and reporting during the 24h race: the drivers will be available to the fans in the pits and the pit lane. Via the Story feature on Facebook and Instagram, they will take fans behind the scenes and show them how things are for the team during the race, how they prepare and what the extraordinary 24 hours are like for them. For the Falken fans, the autograph sessions were always a highlight of the 24h race. The fans are rarely able to get so up close and personal with their idols. Things will also be the same this year: virtual meet and greet events are to be organised via the tyre brand’s social media channels, where fans can ask their questions directly to the drivers.
And this year, the spectacular Drift Show is also taking place again: It is to be produced in advance of the 24h race, before being broadcast after the top qualifying sessions on RTL NITRO on TV and in the live streams. Viewers can look forward to new sensational footage and interviews with the Falken Drift professionals James Deane (IRL), Remmo Niezen (NED), Rohan Van Riehl (LUX), Mark Vissers (NED) and Rick van Goethem (NED).
Falken has also created an augmented reality filter for Instagram especially for the 24h race: With a selfie camera, the fans can put on a virtual Falken helmet, and therefore show their support for the Falken team on a digital basis. In this way, and with a bit of luck, the participants can win an original Falken helmet from Falken racing driver Martin Ragginger.