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Intercontinental GT Challenge

Indianapolis Thursday Notebook

Sportscar365’s Thursday notebook from Indianapolis Motor Speedway…

Photo: Gruppe C/Merceces-AMG

***SRO Motorsports Group has made several Balance of Performance adjustments on Tuesday to the originally published BoP table for the event, confirming 10kg weight breaks for the Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo, BMW M6 GT3, Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 and McLaren 720S GT3, while the Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo has been given a 5 kg weight increase.

***The BoP table for this weekend is specific to Indianapolis Motor Speedway unlike SRO’s track-based category system utilized at the majority of other events.

***Andy Lally has been a late confirmation in TRG’s Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport for the Indianapolis 8 Hour powered by AWS, replacing Dr. Jim Rappaport. Lally will be reunited with longtime friend Spencer Pumpelly as well as Derek De Boer in the GT4 class entry.

***Longtime SRO America entrant Classic BMW will transform into Fast Track Racing following the sale of the Classic BMW dealership by Sewell Automotive Companies. This weekend’s Indianapolis round will mark the “final stop” in the dealership’s involvement in motorsports that dates back to 1973.

“The dealership’s racing program has won races, team, manufacturer, and driver’s championships as well as the coveted BMW Sports Trophy, which it won in 2018, the only time a U.S.-based team took the prize,” said team owner Eric Maas, who plans to continue to campaign BMWs but under the Fast Track Racing banner in 2022.

***In a change to the initial entry list, Classic BMW will field a single BMW M4 GT4 in the eight-hour for drivers John Capestro-Dubets, Alex Filsinger and Dominic Starkweather.

***In addition to its participation in the eight-hour, Inception Racing’s McLaren 720S GT3 is also entered in GT America powered by AWS competition with Brendon Iribe. Iribe has two previous overall wins in the 40-minute, single-driver Bronze-rated series, which concludes its season with races on Friday and Saturday.

***Max Root is making his first SRO start of the season after rejoining Wright Motorsports, whom he claimed the Am class championship with last year. The addition of Root to the lineup alongside newly clinched Pro-Am class champions Jan Heylen and Fred Poordad has resulted in the car moving to the Silver class for the Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli duration of the race.

***In addition to the switch from Pro-Am to Silver Cup for Racers Edge Motorsports, Compass Racing and Wright Motorsports once the GTWC portion of the race is over, the No. 33 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 also changes classes from Pro to Silver. 

***Teams have been allowed only one driver derogation per lineup, which caused several squads to end up in classes they had not initially had planned to be in. Compass’ Acura NSX GT3 Evo is carrying Silver Cup stickers on its car yet will contest the first three hours as a GTWC America Pro-Am entry.

***There had been initial questions whether Matt McMurry would be able to score GTWC America points due to being paired with Ashton Harrison, who is making her series and GT3 debut. However, Sportscar365 understands that McMurry’s Silver rating will allow him to score points regardless.

***Series rules state that a Gold or Platinum-rated driver must be paired with their season-long co-driver to score points, a rule that caught Dane Cameron out of winning the 2019 Pro-Am championship after sharing his RealTime Racing Acura with two different co-drivers that year.

***Francorchamps Motors — the title sponsor on the pair of Pro class AF Corse entries for this weekend and at the Kyalami 9 Hour — is the official Ferrari dealership of Brussels, located 15 miles southeast in the city of Wavre, Belgium.

***Team WRT is leaning on IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge Audi outfit Fast MD Racing for some supplies this weekend. The American squad is providing motorized pit karts to WRT, which is fielding a pair of Audi Sport-backed R8 LMS GT3 Evos.

***The No. 75 SunEnergy1 Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo is sporting a metallic orange livery this weekend (pictured above) following blue and green designs in earlier races this year. As was the case here in 2020 and in this year’s IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup races, the Kenny Habul-led effort is being crewed by Gradient Racing.

***Mikael Grenier, who contested three GTWC America events with Winward Racing, is part of SunEnergy1’s lineup alongside Habul and Martin Konrad.

***Konrad is arriving off the back of a Pro-Am class win at last weekend’s GTWC Europe Endurance Cup season finale at Barcelona with SPS Automotive Performance.

***K-PAX Racing has yet to decide on its 2022 plans according to team owner Jim Haughey, who told Sportscar365 that his personal preference would be a full season of IGTC. He said questions over the feasibility of the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour, due to Australia’s current lockdown, have lessened those prospects.

***Haughey refused to confirm that an IMSA GTD Pro program has been ruled out, despite multiple sources telling Sportscar365 that an internal deadline for a commitment to be Lamborghini’s factory-supported team in the series has already passed.

***Former SRO America regulars Samantha Tan and Harry Gottsacker are at Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Spain testing the BMW M4 GT3. Tan’s ST Racing outfit has ordered two M4s ahead of a program in the 24H Series next year. They are being supported by factory drivers Augusto Farfus and Jens Klingmann at Valencia.

***Selected cars and teams are scheduled to be taking part in a parade from the track to downtown Speedway, Ind. on Friday evening as part of pre-race festivities. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. ET and is understood to be similar to parades seen at the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa and Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.

Daniel Lloyd contributed to this report

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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