The 69th edition of the 24 Hours of Spa promises a competition never known. A total of 64 vehicles, 62 of which compete under the regulations GT3, are given appointment in the circuit of Spa-Francorchamps to take part in the appointment of queen of the Blancpain GT Series. Up to eleven brands are represented in a grill that has official drivers are the champions of categories such as the DTM or the WEC, with former Formula 1 drivers and with real specialists in car GT. The emotion is served in a circuit that tends to provide changing conditions throughout its more than seven miles and in which will take part to seven Spanish pilots.
The German brands are perhaps the rivals to beat. Audi has a payroll of pilots enviable. Some of their cars the most fearsome are the Audi #2 Garcia, Müller and Rast, the Audi #5 of Fässler, Vanthoor and the ‘adopted’ Lotterer, the Audi #6 Berthon, Richelmi and Tréluyer or the Audi #17, Leonard, Green, and Dennis. Mercedes-AMG has different bets between HTP Motorsport and AKKA-ASP, although all eyes are on the Mercedes #87 Eriksson, Buhk and Perera. BMW defends title with the two M6 GT3 of ROWE Racing and pilots of the likes of Spengler, Catsburg, Blomqvist, Sims, Martin and Eng.
Porsche plays up its options to a letter, the Porsche 911 #117 in the competing Vanthoor, Estre and Christensen. All in all, the brand from Stuttgart is the fourth alternative the German triumph where the GT3 italians are the opposing force, or what is the same, the GT3 Lamborghini and Ferrari. By the house of Sant’agata Bolognese there is a car following too closely given its performance in the first half of the year. This is the Lamborghini Hurricane #63 Bortolotti, Engelhart and Caldarelli. For its part, and from Maranello, Ferrari has three cars winners of the hand of AF Corse, Kaspersky Motorsport and SMP Racing.
With a volume of cars less, there are three brands that also have serious options to fight for victory if they play their cards. The first one is Bentley, which is already close to victory in 2016 and comes from winning the 1,000 km of Paul Ricard. The Bentley #7 and #8 are the large hares of the brand, but it is noteworthy that in Spa adds a third unit of the Continental GT3 Team ABT. Nissan is moving in a similar script with two G-TR NISMO GT3, and Jaguar with its two G3, both structures with a Spanish presence in their ranks.
Leaving to one side the testimonial presence of Aston Martin with a single GT3 that even competes in the category queen, the last mark with force on the grid is McLaren through the team Strakka Racing. In the team are mixed cars of the Pro-Am Cup and the premier class, so that the real options of the firm of Woking passed by the McLaren 650S GT3 #58 of Ledogar, Bell and Barnicoat and the #59 of Watson and Jafaar. This car has suffered the low of Dean Stoneman at the last minute, so their options have been able to see trastocadas.
special Chapter deserve for the last seven Spanish pilots who defend the colors of up to six different brands. With options of victory, in the Audi #1 competes Antonio Garcia the fruit of the good relationship between the German mark and Corvette. Same options you have Andy Soucek in the Bentley #8. A step behind in Spa can be the Jaguar G3 #14 Albert Costa, like the top #16 Miguel Toril. As a great strength of Nissan in the GT-R NISMO’s #23 is Lucas Ordoñez, while Miguel Molina competes in the Ferrari #72, another of the GT3 with options to victory. With the support of manufactures, Dani Juncadella will fight in the Mercedes #88.
Hours of the 24 Hours of Spa, the Blancpain GT Series
|Day / Time||Session||Duration|
|Thursday 27/07 – 11:50h||Free practice 1||90′|
|Thursday 27/07 – 17:45h||Session of pre-classification||60′|
|Thursday 27/07 – 20:10:||Classification||75′|
|Thursday 27/07 – 21:55h||Classification night||120′|
|Friday 28/07 – 18:50h||Warm Up||30′|
|Friday 28/07 – 19:30h||Superpole||30′|
|Saturday 29/07 – 16:30h||24 Hours of Spa||1440′|