Emery/Hofer secure vital win ahead of series finale

Jamec Racing’s Geoff Emery has enjoyed a major coup towards the 2023 Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia powered by AWS title after taking out round honours at Queensland Raceway.

Alongside Austrian co-driver, Max Hofer, Emery entered the weekend on the back foot after a somewhat disappointing round at Sydney Motorsport Park last month but bounced back with a win and runner-up finish at the newly-renovated Ipswich Circuit.

The first race of the weekend saw the series leaders steer their Audi R8 LMS Evo 2 to a race win after a brilliant opening stint from Emery, allowing Hofer to cross the line 10 seconds clear of EMA Motorsports/The Bend Motorsport Park’s Yasser Shahin and Garnett Patterson.

With a penalty applied for race two, Hofer would this time be the one putting in the work early to stick with the frontrunners through to the pit-stop phase – where Emery would then take over and take advantage of incidents ahead to cross the line in second.

The second-place finish behind title rival, Liam Talbot and his co-driver Garth Tander, gave Emery a smaller gap in a title race that will go right down to the wire.

“We are really happy with the result, with my driver being Max Hofer that always helps, he is a very important part of this team,” Emery said.

“We went there the Wednesday prior to work on our setup and work on those issues we had, and it gave us the pace we needed, we were well into the window or where we wanted the car to be by Friday practice.

“We really struggled at Sydney Motorsport Park, so we had to do a little bit of soul searching and that was an integral part of our success.

“It’s awesome to be where we are as we head into the final round, and while it puts us under a little bit of pressure, it’s a great place to be in.

“Our thought process from day one has always been to finish first you first have got to finish, so we made sure we weren’t making any contact with any cars.”

2023 Speed Series, Round 5, Queensland Raceway, Queensland, Australia.
August 11th – 13th 2023.
World Copyright: Daniel Kalisz Photographer

After playing an important role in the weekend’s success, Hofer looks forward to joining Emery for the final round of the season.

“Compared to Sydney, it was quite a relaxed weekend, we straight away knew we were looking quite good, and we could focus more on the driving rather than the setup,” Hofer said.

“It was quite difficult to make a move around Queensland Raceway – I tried to go hard at the start of race two to grab the lead but because of the dirty air, I just got stuck. Although, Geoff found the pace later on, so it was good.

“I will be back with Geoff again for the final round, but for me, I just want to finish as high as possible for Geoff, that’s what I am here for so the approach will be just like this last weekend, go out there and have fun and the rest will follow.”

Heading into the final round in Adelaide, Talbot currently leads Emery by just seven points, while Yasser Shahin and Garnett Patterson sit a further 15 points back.

With plenty of points on offer in November, it is certain to go right down to the wire.

The final round of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia powered by AWS will take place at the VAILO Adelaide 500 on 23-25 November.