Big grid set for Queensland Raceway

A record field will take part in Round 3 of the CAMS Australian GT Trophy Series presented by Pirelli, as part of the Shannons Nationals round this weekend.

Boasting 21-cars across three classes, the field promises to deliver a thrilling weekend of competition around Queensland Raceway, a circuit renowned for exciting racing.

This weekend marks the halfway point in the series, which has already seen nail-biting battles at both Sandown and Winton.

At Sandown, Rod Salmon and Rob Smith were inseparable all weekend, while at Winton Steve McLaughlan was pushed hard by Matt Stoupas and Salmon.

The quartet of Audis will again battle it out this weekend, with McLaughlan looking to extend his series lead.

The Audi R8 LMS Ultra pilot holds a commanding position at the top of the table, though came under intense pressure last time out.

Around a circuit that has traditionally favoured Lamborghini and Porsche, he’ll also face a renewed challenge from Jan Jinadasa and Richard Gartner, both aboard Lamborghini Gallardos.

Upholding the honour for Porsche in Trophy Class will be Emanuel Mezzasalma, who has demonstrated strong pace already in the Porsche 997 Cup Car, as will series debutants Garry Mennell and Kean Booker who’ll share a similar car for On Track Motorsport.

Rick Mensa also stands as a strong contender, having quietly gone about his racing to sit third in the title race in the Audi R8 LMS and Travers Beynon continues making strides forward in the fearsome black and gold Audi.

Having shared driving duties in his Australian GT career to date, Rio Nugara is ready to race solo for the first time aboard his Audi, while the ever consistent Con Whitlock will again be looking to pickup a healthy haul of points from his journey north.

Ferrari is well represented, with Wayne Mack returning to the fray in his Ferrari 458 GT3 in Trophy Class, with three more entries from the Prancing Horse in Challenge Modern.

They’ll be driven by 2016 class winner Scott Hookey and Australian GT Championship regular Mark Griffith, who returns to the Trophy Series for the second time in his Ferrari F430.

Newcomers Jamie Arratoon and John Nikolovski will also line up in a Ferrari 458 Challenge.

A five-car MARC Class completes the record field, with John Goodacre and Keith Kassulke ready to do battle once more.

Having competed in the Australian GT Championship with Mark Griffith, Jake Camilleri returns to the MARC Class this weekend aboard a MARC Mazda V8, with one other entry for MARC Cars Australia still to be confirmed.

The packed grid is rounded out by Geoff Taunton and Jason Busk, who’ll once again share a MARC Focus V8 for Eastgate Engineering.

Action at Queensland Raceway gets underway on Saturday morning with practice and two 20-minute qualifying sessions, beginning on 5 August.

Round 3: Queensland Raceway

No. Team/Sponsoe Car Driver/s
1 Audi Sport Customer Racing Audi R8 LMS Ultra Rob Smith
6 Audi Sport Customer Racing Audi R8 LMS Ultra Rod Salmon
10 Harcourts Epping Porsche 997 Emanuel Mezzasalma
12 Anarik Racing Ferrari 458 Challenge Jamie Arratoon/John Nikolovski
17 Travers Beynon Racing Audi R8 LMS Travers Beynon
19 Griffith Corporation Ferrari F430 Mark Griffith
22 CCC Polished Concrete Audi R8 LMS Rick Mensa
23 Kentucky Fried Chicken Audi R8 LMS Ultra Matthew Stoupas
33 Fiorano Motorsport Ferrari 458 Challenge Scott Hookey
40 On Track Motorsport Porsche 997 Garry Mennell/Kean Booker
66 Gap Solutions/SEKTOR MARC Focus V8 John Goodacre
69 Safe-T-Stop Lamborghini Gallardo Richard Gartner
72 Whitlock Bull Bars Audi R8 LMS Con Whitlock
75 Audi Sport Customer Racing Audi R8 LMS Ultra Steve McLaughlan
77 JJA Consulting Group Lamborghini Gallardo Jan Jinadasa
88 Audi Sport Customer Racing Audi R8 LMS Ultra Rio Nugara
91 MARC Cars Australia MARC Focus V8 Keith Kassulke
93 MARC Cars Australia MARC Mazda V8 Jake Camilleri
94 MARC Cars Australia MARC Mazda V8 TBC
95 Eastgate Engineering MARC Focus V8 Geoff Taunton/Jason Busk
147 Mack Bros Roofing Products Ferrari 458 GT3 Wayne Mack