Two new Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evos entered under the Melbourne Performance Centre umbrella has given the Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia powered by AWS grid an increased grid as it heads to The Bend Motorsport Park this weekend.
Nineteen cars are entered for the third round of the season, which will serve as a support race for Australia’s Repco Supercars championship for the first time this year.
Eric Constantinidis will make his series debut in the No. 3 Audi alongside Bill Papas, who has upgraded to the German manufacturer’s most current GT3 offering after starting the season with an Audi R8 LMS ultra.
Both drivers, competing solo, will run in the Am class.
“Because of the enjoyment that we get from racing, and being ambitious old blokes, we decided to take our racing to the next level and get serious about the GT class,” said Papas.
“It will be something new for us. Both Eric and I stared in road-registered Porsches, and that has led us to where we are today.
“One of the appealing aspects of GT World Challenge Australia is the cars themselves.
“Of course, you need a level of skill, but there are very enjoyable and tolerate for the drivers. That can bring you a little closer to the elite drivers. But I’m really looking forward to getting there.”
O’Keeffe, Feeney Drafted in to Sub for Supercars Stars
With both Shane van Gisbergen and Chaz Mostert focusing on Supercars duty this weekend, Dylan O’Keeffe and Broc Feeney have been drafted into MPC’s Audi and the Triple Eight Engineering Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo, respectively.
TCR Australia regular O’Keeffe will team up Tony Bates in the No. 24 Bostik Audi, with Prince Jefri Ibrahim having his third different co-driver in as many rounds in Feeney.
Headlining the Pro-Am field are championship leaders Garth Tander and Yasser Shahin in their Audi, which dominated the opening round at Phillip Island and took another win at the recent round at Bathurst.
In the Am class, Tony Quinn has been the man to catch in his Local Legends Aston Martin Vantage GT3.
The veteran racer was undefeated at the recent round at Mount Panorama and currently holds a 27-point advantage over Andrew MacPherson and Ben Borter’s Lamborghini Huracan GT3.
In the GT Trophy Series, the battle is hotly-contested with Brad Schumacher’s Audi and Brett Hobson’s first-gen Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 separated by just 13 points.
The GT field will practice and qualify on Friday, followed by two one-hour races on Saturday and Sunday.