The most successful team in GT Asia Series history has thrown down the gauntlet ahead of the opening round of the 2015 season, confirming that Ferrari factory drivers Gianmaria Bruni, Toni Vilander and James Calado will join reigning series champion Mok Weng Sun for the first three rounds of the season.
“There had been much speculation about who would be sharing the No. 1 car,” team boss Arj Kulasegaram said. “We fielded calls from all corners of the world, but we had a plan, and I would argue that we now have one of the best GT driver lineups in the world for the coming season.
“All three of these drivers compete with Ferrari in their World Endurance Championship program, with ‘Gimmi’ Bruni and Toni Vilander the reigning WEC World Champions in a Ferrari 458 GTE, so they know their way around the cars,” Kulasegaram confirmed.
At Yeongam in four weeks time, Weng Sun will be joined by Englishman Calado who will be making his Clearwater debut, although the Ferrari regular knows a thing or two about South Korea, as the third driver for the Force India F1 team at the venue in 2013 where he turned laps of the circuit during the Friday practice sessions.
“Gimmi [Bruni] will join us again at Okayama for round two, reacquainting himself with the team after winning last year’s Sepang 12-Hour with Mok and Alif Hamdan, whilst Toni Vilander – another driver who has driven with us and won at Sepang – will drive the No. 1 car for the third round at Fuji.
“Meanwhile Craig Baird – the winningest driver in Porsche Carrera Cup history, and our Clearwater Racing Carrera Cup Asia driver this year – will be doing ‘super-sub’ duties alongside Richie Wee again in South Korea, before Clearwater stalwart, Matt ‘Lucky Charms’ Griffin returns to drive alongside Richie from round two onwards, re-forming the team that took victory at Shanghai last year.
“Our firm focus for 2015 is winning a fourth driver’s and team’s title.
“All of us here at Clearwater Racing want to thank Antonello Coletta and Ferrari Corse Clienti for their commitment to our project in GT Asia – it shows how highly they rate this series – and we will be doing everything we can to ensure victory.”
“There’s no question that the 2015 season will be our biggest challenge yet,” Weng Sun admitted.
“There are more factory teams entering the GT Asia Series this year, and some of the world’s best drivers will be coming to challenge us as we go looking for a fourth title, but we’ll be ready.
“I have never driven with James Calado before, but he is very highly regarded by Ferrari who were quick to sign him after his efforts with Force India, and he has proven to be an outstanding addition to the team, so I am really looking forward to driving with him at Yeongam.”