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Reinke: “If You Go to Macau, You’re Ready to Gamble”

FIA GT World Cup should remain in Macau, according to Audi’s Chris Reinke…

Photo: Audi

Audi’s Chris Reinke believes the FIA GT World Cup should remain in Macau, despite controversial and carnage-filled events in the last two editions.

A massive pileup last year’s Qualifying Race eliminated nearly half of the field, giving clear sailing to Mercedes-AMG’s Eduardo Mortara to sweep the weekend and claim the 2017 title.

It came just 12 months after Laurens Vanthoor was crowned World Cup champion, despite finishing the event on his roof, following an airborne accident that ultimately ended the race after just five laps completed in a 90-minute period.

Reinke, the Head of Audi Sport customer racing, said manufacturers and teams should understand the risks involved with the event, which serves as a one-off race in the global GT3 racing scene.

“I’m quite clear on that for us,” Reinke told Sportscar365. “It has a unique welcome on its own, not being part of a championship and therefore being the ultimate GT3 racing event.

“For us, Macau is the matching track for that. It’s an extraordinary event.

“To be part of a championship it might be too much of a gamble but if you go to Macau, you’re ready to gamble or you’re not. We have no problem with it staying in Macau.

“When you go to Macau, you know what you’re in for. You know before and you know when you come home.”

The event, established in 2015 from the popular Pro-Am Macau GT Cup, has evolved into an all-professional race, with the FIA prohibiting Bronze and some Silver-rated drivers last year in an effort to improve the quality of the grid.

A total of 20 cars took part in the 2017 edition, represented by a record seven different GT3 manufacturers.

At least one GT3 manufacturer representative has suggested the idea of moving the event to another established venue, such as Yas Marina Circuit on the Abu Dhabi Formula One weekend.

However, it remains unclear whether a change of venue could be realistically in the cards for 2018.

“There is a great risk to it, and we are fully aware of it when we sign up. Everybody should be aware,” Reinke said.

“That’s what it’s known for and if you’re ready for the challenge, there is an opportunity to take it or leave it.”

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Azuma

    January 3, 2018 at 11:04 am

    The GT3 cars are now too fast for Macau.

    A change of venue is a excellent idea, especially the suggestion of going to the Yas Marina Circuit on the weekend of Formula One Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

    Moving to Yas Marina will give us a longer and wider circuit and could give us better racing, more entries, more manufactures and maybe even another category like GT4.

    Brilliant!

    • Matt

      January 4, 2018 at 5:01 pm

      Lol no. Yas Marina is a terrible track with no character.

  2. Robin Thabank

    January 3, 2018 at 11:25 am

    Going to Yas Marina this time of year may hurt Gulf 12 hours attendance. Some teams may not be willing to make the trip there twice for both events.

    If anything Macau could become a GT4 event but with Pros. Less expensive vehicles and it’ll be a proper street race.

  3. N8

    January 3, 2018 at 11:53 am

    I stopped reading at “the ultimate GT3 event”.

    Macau should be what it’s always been, a junior formula headliner with some interesting support races, like motorcycles. The event isn’t for manufacturers. The “track” isn’t for GT cars. All of this foolishness is just Stephane Ratel’s attempt to hijack something that has built it’s own cache and make it his.

    • Azuma

      January 3, 2018 at 12:17 pm

      “the ultimate GT3 event”, N8, Come on.

      GT3 has grown out of Macau. We now see more red flags than racing.

      Robin is right, Macau could become a GT4 event. It will be less expensive, better racing and they will be easier to fix.

      • Toni

        January 4, 2018 at 1:28 pm

        Fully agree, should be GT4 cars. Current GT3 cars are massive and not suitable for this track.

      • Matt

        January 4, 2018 at 5:02 pm

        Did you even read what he posted?

    • Barber

      January 3, 2018 at 12:33 pm

      Stephane Ratel is actually against the GT World Cup being at Macau, he has no control of it, it is a FIA thing. He also says that FIA should require manufacturers that want their GT3 homologated to have a entry in the World Cup

      https://youtu.be/5BMQjaNuPPk

      Skip to 20:35
      35

  4. Pierre

    January 3, 2018 at 10:23 pm

    Yes how exciting is an event that’s only half a dozen laps filled with red and yellow flags. Seems totally worth it.

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