K-PAX Racing will expand to Europe, having confirmed a two-car full-season program in GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup, featuring factory-crewed Bentley Continental GT3s.
The longtime SRO Motorsports America competitor, which won the GT World Challenge America teams’ title last year, will largely focus its 2020 program in the hotly contested Endurance Cup, which includes the Total 24 Hours of Spa.
Bentley factory drivers Maxime Soulet and Jules Gounon will share the No. 3 car with K-PAX regular Rodrigo Baptista, with Alvaro Parente joining Andy Soucek and returning factory ace Jordan Pepper in the No. 9 entry.
The move comes after a turbulent season in GT World Challenge America for the California-based team, which was impacted by several controversial penalties and calls in race control.
Team owner Jim Haughey is a stakeholder in SRO America.
“K-PAX Racing has been racing in the U.S. for a long time, and we have had many successes here,” Haughey said. “I have always had an interest in endurance racing and with the current status of GT World Challenge, we have the opportunity to go endurance racing at some of the most iconic tracks in Europe.
“I have always wanted to race at these tracks, with the strength of our team and our relationship with Bentley Motorsport is what is allowing us the opportunity to run two pro cars. The timing was just right to make the move in 2020.”
The 2020 campaign will mark the team’s only second overseas endeavor, after contesting the Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli race in Sepang in 2016.
The team will set up a satellite base in Hellenthal, Germany for the five-round campaign, which kicks off at Monza in April.
“It has been a lot of work on the front end arranging a shop to work out of, planning the logistics and getting everything coordinated but everything is on track,” said program manager Darren Law.
“Our driver lineup is extremely good, and our crew has the endurance background needed to compete at this level and Bentley has been an amazing partner in helping us to coordinate this effort.
“We know it is going to be tough, the level of competition and the number of cars is different and will be a new challenge that we are not taking lightly but we are confident that we will be competitive and hope our U.S. fans will follow and support our new endeavor next season.”
K-PAX Poised to be Lead Bentley Team in Europe
The team is expected to fly the flag for British manufacturer in Endurance Cup, fielding three of Bentley’s six factory drivers.
As reported by Sportscar365 in October, the works M-Sport squad is not expected to return to the series, with a focus put entirely on IGTC instead.
Bentley Motorsport director Paul Williams said he’s delighted to welcome K-PAX to Europe following its success in North America.
“In two years, they have taken two championship titles with us; they’ve raced alongside Bentley Team M-Sport in California 8 Hours; supported our teams at the 24 Hours of Spa; and have become a pillar within our motorsport family,” Williams said.
“We are delighted to welcome this team of talented people over to Europe and we’re ready to support them in getting to know our iconic tracks.
“It won’t be easy to settle into GT World Challenge Europe, because it is extremely competitive, but K-PAX Racing has everything in place to represent us at the highest level and we have no doubt that they will impress.”