Six first-generation Audi R8 GT3 race cars will be driven in this year’s Pirelli World Challenge season, set to kick off at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas next weekend. No other automaker is as well-represented as Audi in the GT racing series, which boasts a large 31-car field.
None of the race teams running R8 GT3 cars this season are official factory-backed Audi teams, however the automaker says they can rely on “expert support in terms of spare parts supply and advice,” from the factory. Audi Sport’s North American customer racing arm will also accompany the teams to the different races with support vehicles and other personnel who will assist the teams in setting-up in the paddock, fielding the car and aiding in maintenance.
“North America is an important market for Audi,” Romolo Liebchen, Head of Audi Sport customer racing said in a statement. “That makes the positive development of the Pirelli World Challenge in recent years, plus the fact that we’re the strongest brand in the top field of the series in 2015, particularly gratifying. It clearly speaks for the Audi R8 LMS ultra and the support we offer to the teams in North America.”
GMG Racing, who is fielding two separate R8 GT3 cars this season, have finished as runner ups to the factory-backed Cadillac Racing team for the past two years in a row. They are returning with drivers James Sofronas and have also added Brent Holden and Alez Welch to their roster. Drew Regitz of Stephen Cameron Racing, Mike Skeen of CRP Racing and Jeff Courtney of JCR Motorsports will also field R8 GT3 cars when the series kicks off on March 8.