The ongoing rise of the Bathurst 12 Hours into one of the World’s classic races continues with an impressive line up of 60 cars announced in the provisional entry list. Thirteen different brands across four classes will tackle the February 2-4 event as entries officially close at 5:00pm Today (Friday 15 December).
It’s an impressive line up in the fight for outright honours with 31 GT3 cars in class A featuring some of the World’s best Sportcar drivers taking on some of Australasia’s top Supercar stars.
“We are very pleased with the entry list and the depth of competition in every class,” Event Director John Casey said.
“The spread between outright and BRM Chronographes Pro/Am contenders in class A is pleasing and will see fantastic competition for both trophies within the GT3 class.
“Entries remain open for a day and we are expecting a few high-profile additions to the current list before the final grid is settled.”
Audi are well represented with 10 examples of the Audi R8 with the local and New Zealand entries bolstered by the addition of high profile international outfit, WRT.
The Belgium-based team has been one of the most successful teams in GT3 racing, winning the Blancpain Endurance Series Pro Cup in 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015, and the Sprint Cup team’s title every year since its inception in 2013.
The team will run two high profile entries with driving combinations to be announced in due course.
Bentley Motorsport will return to give the current Bentley Continental GT3 its final fling before the new 2018 model is launched later in the year.
The British brand has been on the podium the last two years and will aim to farewell the original Continental with a Bathurst victory next February.
Three BMW M6 GT3s will compete – including a two-car outfit from BMW team SRM and a single-car entry from the iconic BMW team Schnitzer from Germany.
New Zealand team Trass Family Motorsport will represent Ferrari with their 458 GT3, while three Lamborghini’s will tackle the mountain – including two Gallardo’s and a Huracan GT3 for Trofeo Motorsport.
McLaren will look to return to the top of the podium following their 2016 success with three entries, while Mercedes AMG will be stronger again with no less than six of the thundering AMG GT3s represented.
Newcomers Strakka Racing will make their first trip to Bathurst to kick off their Intercontinental GT Challenge campaign with two cars, while Scott Taylor Motorsport and Mark Griffith will enter their locally-based entries.
Porsche has a host of international representation, including Manthey Racing from Germany and the US-based entries from Black Swan and Competition Motorsport.
While several key driver combinations are yet to be confirmed, those announced already include Supercars stars Tim Slade and Lee Holdsworth and international talent like Timo Glock and Jeroen Bleekemolen.
Missing from the entry list at this stage is an entry from Nissan, after returning to the race last year there is currently no entry for the 2015 winners.
Five Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Cars will battle it out for Class B honours, while class C – for GT4 cars – has seen enormous growth this year.
Thirteen cars make it the biggest ever representation of GT4 cars in the Southern Hemisphere with the field evenly spread across the key brands competing in the class.
Four of the brand-new BMW M4 GT4s are entered – including one from the USA – while the same number of Ginetta’s will contest the race representing the local arm of the brand.
Two KTM X-Bows and three Porsche Cayman GT4s round out what is a highly anticipated class battle.
The Invitational class is now 11-strong and includes three of the new MARC II racers alongside six of the existing cars, plus the two Daytona Sportscars entries featuring the return of the popular Daytona Coupe.
The popularity of the race with fans shows no sign of slowing either with camping spots already at a premium, local accommodation already booked out and ticket sales well up on last year’s record crowd.
Fans are advised to book now for remaining camping places at www.bathurst12hour.com.au
With Bathurst 12 Hour Media Release