The final entry list is now locked in for what is setting up to be the most accomplished and talented field on record for the Bathurst 12 Hour in 2018.
Surprisingly, there will be no entries from the prancing horse (last year’s winning car from Maranello Motorsport) or their fierce rivals from the east (Nismo).
Despite this fact, the 52 entries currently planning to make the early morning start on Sunday 4 February consist of a huge range of manufacturers and drivers alike.
Make no mistake, this looks to be the most competitive drivers field in the history of this event – period.
Many notable names from the FIA World Endurance Championship, Supercars, Australian GT, Blancpain GT and Porsche Carrera Cup will be challenging for outright victory in this brutal event around Mount Panorama, which last year had 19 cars fail to see the finish line.
Last year’s winning drivers Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes have this year moved to different teams and manufacturers in an attempt to retain their respective crowns.
Whincup will now be driving for the Mercedes-AMG Team SunEnergy1 Racing Team, whilst Lowndes teams up with fellow Supercars Champion Shane van Gisbergen and factory McLaren driver Côme Ledogar in the YNA Autosport McLaren 650S GT3.
Another noteworthy entry and driver for this year’s race is a welcome back to the 12 Hour for Craft Bamboo Racing in their Porsche 911 GT3 R, with current FIA World Endurance Champion Earl Bamber teaming up with fellow factory Porsche drivers Kevin Estre and Laurens Vanthoor.
With such an amazing field of teams and drivers it’s almost impossible to pick a clear favourite for an outright win, I have however provided my personal picks for team to look out for in each class:
- PRO: YNA Autosport – McLaren 650S GT3 – Shane Van Gisbergen | Craig Lowndes | Côme Ledogar
- PR-AM: Nineteen Corp P/L – Mercedes AMG GT – David Reynolds | John Martin | Liam Talbot | Mark Griffith
- AM: Safe T-Stop – Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 – Richard Gartner | Hadrian Morall | David Wall | John Bowe
- B: Grove Motorsport Pty Ltd – Porsche GT3 Cup – Stephen Grove | Brenton Grove | Benjamin Barker
- C: Boat Works Racing – BMW M4 GT4 – Aaron Seton | Matt Brabham | Tony Longhurst
- I: MARC Cars Australia – Ford Focus V8 – Keith Kassulke | Rod Salmon | Will Brown
We will be bringing you all the latest news and results from this massive event throughout the week!
The current entry list as of today can be viewed here.
Images via Ignite Image