German GT3 manufacturers remain supportive of hosting the FIA GT World Cup at Macau, hailing the uniqueness of the location and significance for the Asian market.
With Audi, BMW, Mercedes-AMG and Porsche, four German manufacturers filled the grid of this year’s FIA GT World Cup in Macau.
The fifth running of the FIA GT World Cup and the 12th GT3 race as a part of the prestigious Macau Grand Prix resulted in the third World Cup win for Mercerdes-AMG and the brand’s fourth GT3 success at Macau.
Next to the drivers’ trophy for Raffaele Marciello and the manufacturers’ title, Mercedes-AMG also claimed Silver Cup honors courtesy of Roelof Bruins’s 1th place overall with the Solite Indigo Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3.
After the event, representatives of Audi, Mercedes-AMG and Porsche all pledged their support for Macau’s legendary 3.8-mile Guia street circuit as the venue for the GT World Cup.
“It is the most significant single GT event in Asia,” said Stefan Wendl, head of customer racing at Mercedes-AMG.
“Yes, there is the Suzuka 8 Hours, and we are delighted to see that growing, but that is an endurance race and part of a series (Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli).
“This is a sprint race, a single event, and with a lot of prestige on top of that.
“Moreover, Macau is a venue that is easy to get to in this part of the world, with no need for visa or the like, and excellent flight connections, so that is also making it more convenient.
“And there is the great heritage of the Macau Grand Prix as an event, which is simply making it fantastic.”
Chris Reinke, Wendl’s opposite number at Audi Sport customer racing, commented: “For us, the World Cup in Macau is unique and extremely demanding, which is making it worthy of its World Cup status.
“Only the one who doesn’t make any mistakes is on the top step after the race.”
Having lost arguably his main contender for a top position when Dries Vanthoor made a mistake in Saturday’s Qualifying Race, Reinke acknowledged the challenges of the track.
“Of course, the fact that the circuit comes with a certain potential danger and there is little time for testing can be seen in a critical way,” he said.
“But it is the same for everybody and surely also is part of the special fascination.”
While this year’s field only included German brands, Reinke would welcome other manufacturers.
“For Audi Sport customer racing, the World Cup in Macau is a fixed part of our program. Seeing further manufacturers, particularly from the Asian region, taking on this special challenge, is desirable.”
Sebastian Golz, project manager of the GT3 program at Porsche, also is supportive of the event.
“Part of the fascination of the World Cup is the fact that it is held at a venue that is really special, with a long heritage in motorsport,” he added.
“That is what it makes stand out. Had it been at any normal circuit, it would be less prestigious. The location adds to the fascination.”