The GT World Challenge Europe series has revealed an increase in entries across the Sprint Cup and Endurance Cup competitions as well as an increase in the number of full-time entries for the season. This expansion also showcases the bringing together of eleven top automotive brands to compete in the series.
Celebrating its tenth season of running, the Endurance Cup has 53 cars signed up full time to the 5 round championship with that number likely to go up with the addition of race-by-race entries and also rising due to the increased grid at the Spa 24 Hours event.
The Sprint Cup also sees a boost with 33 entrants for the season. 28 cars have signed up to the full season of GT World Challenge Europe looking for the overall Championship title.
With an increase in grid sizes comes an impressive list of top-line brands with machines designed for these drivers to get the most of. The marques include Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, Porsche, Ferrari, BMW, Honda, Mclaren, Lamborghini, Lexus and Mercedes-AMG.
Aston Martin and the Vantage GT3 will once again be represented predominantly by R-Motorsport. The squad will be running two overall contenders as well as a Silver Cup entry across the full championship. Garage 59 will be bolstering the Aston Martin assault at the Endurance Cup races with one car set for the Silver Cup.
Audi with its R8 LMS GT3, once again has a significant presence in GT World Challenge Europe with nine cars registered as full-season entrants. Team WRT heads up the list with three overall contenders along with a car in the Silver Cup for all ten races. Sainteloc Racing is entering one car to compete for overall honours with a car set to challenge in Pro-Am and Silver Cup. Attempto Racing rounds out Audi’s representation with two cars aiming for the overall victory.
Bentley’s contingent has expanded to give them good representation in the series. French team, CMR, will field two full-season Continental GT3 entries while Team Parker Racing will run a car in the Endurance Cup with drivers from the Bentley Motorsport Academy. Joining Team Parker Racing will be the American K-Pax operation. The team have enjoyed success in America and are looking to test their metal against the best of Europe. Like CMR they will be running two cars.
Whilst further entries for the BMW M6 GT3 at the Spa 24 Hours have been confirmed, BMW only has 1 full-time Endurance Cup entrant. Boutsen Ginion Racing will be extending its relationship with manufacturer, competing for honours in the Pro-Am class.
As is now a tradition in GT racing, Ferrari’s presence in GT World Challenge Europe will be led by AF Corse in the 488 GT3. They will have two cars competing in Sprint Cup and three in the Endurance Cup. Tempesta Racing and stalwarts Rinaldi Racing will have full-season efforts in the Silver Cup with Rinaldi having one other car in Pro-Am for the endurance events.
Honda will continue to be on the Endurance Cup grid with Danish team, Reno Racing, who are moving up from the GT Sports Club Europe after winning the title last year. Another car is confirmed from Honda to appear at the Spa 24 Hours due to their Intercontinental GT Challenge campaign with the improving NSX GT3.
Lamborghini will be looking to remain a strong force across the championship this year after Orange1 FFF Racing won all three top tier drivers’ titles last season. In Sprint Cup Emil Frey Racing enter the Huracan GT3 Evo as part of a two-car full-season entry. Orange1 FFF Racing will have a car defending it’s endurance title as well as have two more cars to compete in the Silver Cup and Pro-Am classes respectively. Barwell Motorsport will also have a two-car effort in the Endurance Cup.
Lexus are heading into the 2020 season for a third year in the series. Tech1 Racing will be the team to run the RCF GT3 in the Sprint Cup and Endurance Cup. The team will be running in the Silver Cup with a possible extra entry for the jewel that is the Spa 24 Hours.
Mclaren and the 720S GT3 is making a massive return to the GT World Challenge Europe series. Newcomer 2 Seas Motorsport will run an overall entry and a Pro-Am car in the Sprint Cup. Optimum Motorsport will join them with a car in the Silver Cup. Optimum, however, will also run for overall victory and Pro-Am in the Endurance Cup whilst Jenson Team Rocket RJN will have a car in Pro-Am.
With the biggest entry for a manufacturer this season, Mercedes-AMG will have plenty of representation across the series. AKKA ASP and Black Falcon are top of the list with multi-car efforts, and RAM Racing will continue its participation in the Pro-Am class. There will also be a number of new teams set to run the AMG GT3; MadPanda Motorsport, HTP-Winward, TokSport, SPS Automotive and ERC Sport will all look to make a big impression.
Spa 24 Hours winners, Porsche, have all 6 of their entries in the Endurance Cup. Spa winning GPX Racing expands to two cars gunning for top honours. Dinamic Motorsport will have three cars with their top tier entry joined by Pro-Am and Silver Cup assaults. Rowe Racing will also be running the 911 GT3-R to cap a strong entry for the German marque.
Stephane Ratel, SRO Motorsports Group founder and CEO has said in regards to the entry list: “We are proud to present the fantastic entry lists that GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS has attracted this season.
“We remain thankful to the loyal teams that continue to race with us year after year, while the number of new additions is also very encouraging. For the Endurance Cup to be entering its 10th year with more than 50 cars on the grid is nothing short of exceptional.
“The Sprint Cup has also shown fantastic growth and, with 33 entrants, has surpassed our own targets. Clearly the world is facing some serious challenges right now and motorsport is particularly impacted.
“Nevertheless, SRO is fully committed to maintaining the 10-event GT World Challenge Europe calendar even if some changes are required. Our promise is to deliver a fantastic season of racing for our teams, drivers and fans.”
Testing for the teams has begun at Paul Ricard with it due to finish on 13/03/2020.