Seven-time Supercars champion Jamie Whincup will make his Australian GT debut at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit next month during the opening round of the CAMS Australian Endurance Championship.
The Red Bull Holden Racing Team driver will join Yasser Shahin in the South Australian’s Mercedes-AMG GT3 entry.
Shahin make his return to the series after cameo appearances in 2018 in his No. 777 ‘The Bend Motorsport Park’ Mercedes-GT3.
The event will see his first run in the car for the first time since this year’s Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour in an entry prepared by Scott Taylor Motorsport.
Like Shahin, Whincup is no stranger to the Mercedes GT3, having competed alongside his Red Bull Holden Racing Team team-mates Craig Lowndes and Shane van Gisbergen also at the Bathurst 12 Hour this year in a Vodafone-liveried Scott Taylor Motorsport entry.
He also drove a Mercedes to second at the 12 Hour in 2018, however this will be the first time Whincup and Shahin have driven alongside one another.
“I’m really looking forward to getting back into the Australian GT action,” Shahin admitted. “I love the endurance format and driving alongside and learning from a world class driver like Jamie can only help my development as a driver.”
Last year at Phillip Island Shahin drove alongside regular co-driver Luke Youlden, but a late deal with STM will see the four-time Bathurst 1000 winner take the helm of the No. 777 entry, and Shahin feels that could be just the tonic to elevate him to the top step of the podium.
“We [Youlden-Shahin] ran at The Bend and Phillip Island last year, which was an event where I did double duty with Radical Australia – I had a double victory in the Radical, but wasn’t as fortunate with the Mercedes, although we managed to claim a tenth placed finish before I ran the three Sprint races at Sydney Motorsport Park alone to finish off my AGT season.
“I enjoy the endurance format as it gives me a chance to learn more from the pro drivers, something which I think has helped me fast-track my ability to extract more out of the car.
“I’ve known Jamie for a while, and obviously am aware of his ability behind the wheel, so I’m really looking forward to sharing the drive and taking the fight to the leading teams.”