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Mercedes-AMG Beats Audi to Defend GTWC Global Title

Conclusion of GTWC Europe season sets final points for SRO’s global World Challenge…

Photo: Patrick Hecq/SRO

Mercedes-AMG has won the 2020 GT World Challenge powered by AWS overall manufacturer’s title after the final round of the Endurance Cup season at Paul Ricard.

Mercedes successfully defended its victory in the inaugural year of SRO Motorsports Group’s umbrella competition for brands engaged in the regional GT World Challenge championships.

This year results from GTWC Europe and GTWC America were taken into account, with the GTWC Asia season canceled amid the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mercedes-AMG scored a total of 10,348 points while Audi finished second on 8,799 and Ferrari third on 7,000.

Lamborghini, which like Audi did not have any cars entered in GTWC America this season, placed fourth on 6,689 points.

“Many thanks to all the customer racing teams who, with all their achievements, have contributed to the successful defense of the manufacturers’ title,” said Stefan Wendl, head of Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing.

“For our entire team at HWA and Mercedes-AMG, this title is a reward for this extraordinary year. We are already looking forward to next season.”

The number of participating manufacturers doubled for the 2020 global World Challenge after only Mercedes-AMG and Ferrari signed up for the inaugural edition last year.

Points were scored by each brand’s highest-finishing car in each category – Pro, Silver Cup, Pro-Am and Am Cup – and then multiplied by the number of cars entered into the class to achieve a total score for one round.

Endurance races carried more weight than sprint races, with class victories bringing 100 position points in the former and 25 points in the latter.

With several categories competing at each race, huge points totals could be achieved at one event.

The single largest points haul from a race this season was the 2,304 points accrued by Audi for its results in the Total 24 Hours of Spa.

Boguslavskiy, WRT Clinch European Overall Titles

The conclusion of the Paul Ricard 1000km also confirmed Timur Bogusvlavskiy as the GTWC Europe overall drivers’ champion, while WRT won the teams’ accolade.

Despite failing to score any race points at Ricard after his AKKA-ASP Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo developed a front splitter problem, Boguslavskiy had enough points in hand coming into the Endurance Cup finale to beat Dries Vanthoor and Charles Weerts to the title.

The GTWC Europe overall series aggregates the points achieved in the Endurance Cup and Sprint Cup competitions which this year consisted of four rounds each.

Boguslavskiy finished second in Sprint Cup driving with Mercedes-AMG factory ace Raffaele Marciello, while the 20-year-old Russian and the Italian were leading the Endurance Cup standings until their problems at Paul Ricard enabled Alessandro Pier Guidi and AF Corse to take the spoils.

Boguslavskiy ended the GTWC Europe campaign on 137 points, while Team WRT Audi drivers Vanthoor and Weerts finished on 128 after finishing fourth in the 1000km race.

Marciello, who missed the Zandvoort Sprint Cup round owing to a date clash with the Nürburgring 24, was classified third in the overall drivers’ standings, half a point back.

WRT’s usage of multiple Pro-class crews across Endurance and Sprint enabled the Belgian outfit to clinch its third overall European teams’ title with 164.5 points against AKKA-ASP’s 145.5, while Sainteloc Racing and Haupt Racing Team were third and fourth.

The Pro-Am overall class was won by Chris Froggatt and Eddie Cheever III of Sky-Tempesta Racing while Silver Cup went to Ezequiel Companc of Madpanda Motorsport.

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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