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Intercontinental GT Challenge

Phoenix Confirms Two-Car Audi Effort for Sepang 12H

Phoenix Racing enters two Audi R8 LMS cars for Sepang 12H…

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Phoenix Racing has confirmed an all-factory driver lineup for next month’s Motul Sepang 12 Hours, in Audi’s bid to claim the inaugural Intercontinental GT Challenge crown.

The German squad will enter two Audi R8 LMS cars, with Laurens Vanthoor, Robin Frijns and Christopher Haase in the No. 15 car and Pierre Kaffer, Rene Rast and Markus Winkelhock in the No. 16 entry.

Defending race winner Vanthoor currently leads the IGTC drivers’ championship, five points ahead of McLaren GT’s Shane van Gisbergen, who is expected to be placed in K-PAX Racing’s McLaren 650s GT3 for the title-deciding round.

“The secret to perform well in Sepang is to remain cool, literally,” Vanthoor said. “Physically, this race is the most demanding event I know.

“The combination of the heat and humidity make this 12 hour-race as tough as a 24-hour race. Our aim is very simple: we want to take both drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles in the Intercontinental GT Challenge.”

Audi currently sits third in the Manufacturers’ Championship, behind both Bentley and Mercedes-Benz, both which are expected to have reduced efforts for the final round of the season.

Bentley Team M-Sport, which had initially planned to contest all three races this year, is understood to have not entered Sepang, leaving Absolute Racing as the likely candidate to fly the flag for the British manufacturer.

It’s currently unclear which team will represent Mercedes, which currently sits two points behind championship leader Bentley. Audi, meanwhile, is eight points out of the lead.

The Sepang 12 Hours is set for Dec. 8-10.

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

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