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JP Motorsport Commits to Two-Car McLaren Entry

JP Motorsport to focus on GTWC Europe next year with two-car McLaren entry…

Photo: Dirk Bogaerts/SRO

JP Motorsport has committed to a full-season program in Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS for next year with a pair of McLaren 720S GT3s.

The Polish squad, which started operations in 2020, is planning to run full-length campaigns with both cars in the Endurance Cup and Sprint Cup championships.

Ex-Formula 1 competitor Christian Klien has been named as the first driver for the program, while the categories in which the two McLarens will race are to be determined.

It is understood that one of the cars in the Endurance Cup will be a Pro-class effort.

Klien contested three DTM rounds this year in a JP Motorsport McLaren and also shared a 720S GT3 with team principal Patryk Krupinski at three International GT Open events.

JP Motorsport additionally entered the Paul Ricard 1000km round of GTWC Europe Endurance Cup with Krupinski, Klien and recently-crowned Lamborghini Super Trofeo world champion Karol Basz.

It marked the outfit’s third Endurance Cup appearance to date, after previous outings at the Nürburgring 6 Hours and the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa last year with a Mercedes-AMG GT3.

“We have already competed in races of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS 2020 and 2021 and were very impressed by the professional environment, the organization and of course the races that demand everything from every team,” said Krupsinki.

“We were able to learn a lot at a high level in the DTM this year. However, it was clear to us relatively early that our future will not lay only in this series.

“The event concept is not perfect and makes it difficult for a team like us to set up a good business case for it.

“In addition, as a single player[for a manufacturer] you start at a disadvantage against a field of eight Mercedes-AMGs who work together in the customer racing area despite being different teams.”

Klien said that while he enjoyed his sporadic DTM appearances, the GTWC Europe multi-driver model offers “more opportunities” for the JP Motorsport team.

“For us as a team, 2021 was a very instructive season,” said the former Red Bull and Jaguar F1 driver.

“It was very valuable for us to fight with the best GT3 teams and drivers in the three DTM races and to develop through them.

“Personally, I really enjoyed the DTM races. There is tough competition but at a very high level. In our second and third guest starts at the Nürburgring and in Assen, we were able to keep up very well.

“The top 5 result was of course the highlight and a podium was within reach. So basically, it was a successful season in which we learned a lot as a team.

“In 2022, we as JP Motorsport would like to position and establish ourselves in the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS.

“This offers more opportunities to act as a team in customer racing, as several drivers can drive on one car.

“I particularly like the endurance races most, where a lot of cars are racing at the highest level for three, six or even 24 hours in Spa.

“The team must also deliver top performance in preparation and during the pit stops. I’m really excited to be back soon in the GT World Challenge after 2018 [with Emil Frey Racing and Lexus].”

JP Motorsport has not ruled out competing in other championships next year including ADAC GT Masters and the Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli, although its main program is set to focus on GTWC Europe.

Project manager Markus Specht commented: “Since we are perfectly positioned as a team with McLaren and a strong, scalable structure and platform, hardly anything seems impossible now.”

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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