The new Audi R8 GT3 / LMS has dropped on to the racing scene with a bang. It hasn’t been like the Audi R15 TDI’s start at the 12 Hours of Sebring but these R8′s are completely brand new, damn good looking and damn popular. In stock form the R8 always spoke racecar to us. You could just see it in the lines. We’ve brought you all the news on the ADAC GT Masters Audi R8 LMS cars, the VLN car and now the new entry from Phoenix Racing / Belgian Audi VW Club. Jean-François Hemroulle and Tim Verbergt, will be at the wheel of the Audi R8 GT3 this weekend. Qualifying results will be posted for tomorrow racing.
Belgian Race Kick Off : no less than eight models entered
Are you ready? Then we’ll get going. This coming Sunday, during the Belgian Race Kick Off at Circuit Zolder, the Belgian GT Championship Mediagroep Van Dyck takes off.
Notwithstanding all the negative tidings, the economic downturn which has caused several teams to either cry off or alter course (NGT, GPR, Gravity, A+ Racing, Chad) our national GT3-class is not really in bad health. With no less than twelve cars, eight models and seven different makes we are doing just as well or even better than our neighbours. So let’s stop complaining…
And there’s not only the variety of cars, as the quality of the entrants speaks volumes with various teams aspiring to the title.
Even though they are still looking for their first victory, the 2008 champions, Fred Bouvy and Damien Coens in their Ferrari 430 GT3 from Delahaye-Francorchamps Motors will definitely be defending their title. In addition they are provisionally racing without the 2009 kit.
Similar to the major European brother, the FIA GT3, this championship is now also operating a Pro-Am system, and the gentlemen from Knokke Out will have some heavy competition to take on.
We can consider that five teams in five different cars will be the strongest opponents.
Let us start with the latest news.
Thanks to the support of the Belgian Audi VW Club, in-house drivers Jean-François Hemroulle and Tim Verbergt, will be at the wheel of the gorgeous Audi R8 GT3 this coming weekend. Team Phoenix is entering the car and seeing that both drivers have been classed as «Gold», they automatically inherit an extra 50 kilos of ballast. Notwithstanding that they might well be the big favourites this weekend.
The other latest news is equally impressive. Kuismanen Racing is coming to Belgium with an imposing and brand new Ford GT straight out of the Matech workshops. Team owner Kuismanen and Duncan Huisman are the drivers on duty.
Two further gentlemen who will be carrying an additional 50 kilos are Bert Longin and François Verbist in the First Motorsport Porsche 911 GT3 Cup S. It goes without saying that their main ambition is clinching the title…
Undoubtedly we will also see the Aston Martin DBR9S of Barwell with Vincent Vosse and Eddy Renard up front, as also the Dodge Viper of Jeffrey Van Hooydonk and Koen Wauters. In the meantime Jeff has swapped team and team mate. The second KRK Viper is in the hands of Kris Wauters and Raf Vanthoor.
And then we have the two Lamborghini Gallardo for JD Competition by KS Motorsport, to be driven by Volleberg-Ceusters and De Laet-Van der Zwaan, not forgetting the 600 bhp Ford Mustang GT3 of Stéphane Lémeret and Raphaël Van der Straeten.
Running on through the entrants list we come across the Scuderia Monza Ferrari 430 of the Thiers brothers and a third Viper for Accent Racing with Cracco-Van Audenhove.
This gives us twelve GT3s on the grid and in addition in Division 3 we have the Porsche of our Finnish friends from Westend Racing and in Division 2 we will definitely see vive GT4s (one Ford Mustang, two Lotus Eleven and two Ginetta’s), whilst it is not out of the question that we might have a Porsche also.
Just to remind everyone that all the meetings are comprised out of two races of one hour each, the only exception being the 24 Hours of Zolder, where the competitors from the Dunlop Endurance Cup and the BTCS will also be welcome. As such this race counts double or in fact might be considered to be the equivalent of four races of one hour. The championship promises to be wide open, with perhaps not a mass of cars, but definitely top quality.
Rendezvous this coming Sunday 26th April at Circuit Zolder for the races at 11.00hrs and 14.00hrs.