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McLaren Becomes Seventh Brand to Join Global Series

McLaren becomes seventh manufacturer to join global GT World Challenge contest…

Photo: SRO

McLaren has become the latest automotive brand to commit to the Fanatec GT World Challenge powered by AWS global manufacturers’ championship.

The British marque is the seventh manufacturer to register for the SRO Motorsports Group-run competition which takes on board results from the four regional GT World Challenge series in Europe, America, Australia and Asia.

McLaren arrives into the manufacturers’ championship on the eve of the GTWC Australia season-opener, which marks the second of 29 planned fixtures across the four series.

Porsche and BMW are also new to the global competition and were announced as part of an expanded six-brand entry ahead of last weekend’s GTWC America opener at Sonoma.

Lamborghini, Audi, Ferrari and double defending champion Mercedes-AMG are also taking part.

FIA World Endurance Championship team JOTA recently declared its participation in a full GTWC Europe Sprint and Endurance program with a single McLaren 720S GT3 piloted by three factory drivers.

That is currently the only confirmed McLaren entry for any of the four regional series, although Optimum Motorsport team manager Bas Leinders recently told Sportscar365 that a GTWC Europe continuation is “one of the possibilities” for its McLaren program.

Mercedes-AMG Takes Early Points Lead

Reigning champion Mercedes-AMG leads the standings after round one at Sonoma, where three classes were in action and implementing the multi-layered points system.

Global GT World Challenge points are scored by each manufacturers’ highest-finishing car in each class.

Cars score points if they finish in the class top-ten. Points are given out according to the 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 scale and doubled for three and six-hour races.

The Total 24 Hours of Spa, which forms the headline round of GTWC Europe Endurance Cup, will count for quadruple points.

Points are distributed according to finishing positions in the top ten, meaning that a GT World Challenge manufacturer’s car will not get an upgraded score if it finishes behind a car from a non-participating manufacturer.

Each points amount is then multiplied by the total number of cars competing in the given category. The resulting final scores from the various classes will then be added up to achieve a combined total points score for one manufacturer in one race.

For example, in Race 1 at Sonoma, a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo finished second in the nine-car Pro-Am field, scoring 18 points and giving a multiplied total of 162 points.

In Race 2, a Mercedes-AMG won in Pro-Am which again had nine cars, while a different Mercedes-AMG finished third in the four-car Pro division. These results gave 225 and 60 points respectively, earning the German manufacturer a 447-point total for the weekend.

Manufacturers are not required to have a car present on the grid at every GT World Challenge race. BMW and McLaren are not represented in GTWC Australia this weekend.

Fanatec GT World Challenge powered by AWS Points Standings:

Mercedes-AMG – 447
Porsche – 387
Lamborghini – 344
BMW M – 108
Ferrari – 50
Audi Sport – 0
McLaren – 0

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

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