The Pirelli World Challenge GTS class will see an infusion of new machinery next year, including the Maserati GranTurismo MC, which has generated interest from a number of teams, including Jack Baldwin’s GTSport squad.
With an eye towards the future, the veteran road racer is at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina Circuit this week to take part in the Maserati Trofeo World Series, as part of a recon mission for a likely multi-car PWC effort next year.
“I think certainly by next week, we’d make a final decision on exactly what we’re going to do,” Baldwin told Sportscar365. “But our intention is to buy four cars.
“We’ve already discussed that with them and had some very good discussions and taking a strong three-car effort into GTS next year.”
The Maserati GranTurismo MC, which has competed almost exclusively in the single-make global championship, would replace GTSport’s venerable Porsche Caymans which it had self-developed and campaigned with considerable success over the past several years.
Maserati announced this week plans to homologate the car for GT4 and PWC GTS competition, with a number of minor changes to the engine and aerodynamics in the works to bring it in line with other cars in those classes.
A handful of GranTurismo MCs ran unclassified in the PWC rounds at Sonoma Raceway and Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca this year, as part of a foot-in-the-water experience for the Italian manufacturer.
“So far, I’d say the Maserati is certainly a good car,” Baldwin said. “It’s a cool looking car and a pretty fast car. I think it would be fast enough for GTS/GT4.
“There’s some work to be done on the car but I think they have a nice product.
“And what I like about Maserati is their attitude, their communication. They’re nice guys and seem easy to deal with. They’re engaging and are interested.”
A switch to Maserati would be only one of the changes in store for the Georgia-based team next year, as Baldwin said they are taking their race operations in-house, following a previous relationship with Porsche specialists Goldcrest Motorsports.
Baldwin said that longtime teammate Buz McCall will not be back for a full season, although he could run selected races in a fourth Maserati.
The team is currently seeking qualified drivers to fill the two other seats alongside Baldwin.