The entry list for the 2021 Hi-Tec Oils Bathurst 6 Hour has been confirmed with 153 drivers spread across 62 cars.
Running over the Easter long weekend at the iconic Mount Panorama as part of the Shannons Motorsport Australia Championships calendar, it’s been a long wait since the highly anticipated race last took place.
Of the 62 teams, almost half the field will enter Sunday’s endurance race with three drivers part of their respective teams, while the remaining 33 will contest it with two members taking control.
Although some of Australia’s best production car drivers are locked in, including reigning champions Beric Lynton and Tim Leahey in the Bruce Lynton BMW M3, the most high-profile names on the entry list come from drivers outside the Production cars community.
Headlining the entry list is Repco Supercars Championship star Shane van Gisbergen, with the 2016 champion to line up alongside Shane Smollen and Rob Rubis in the Prestige Connex BMW M4.
The New Zealander isn’t the only Supercars representative involved with Team Cool Drive’s Tim Slade to compete in the Car Mods Australia BMW M3 alongside Bradley Carr.
Another top contender for outright honours will be Australian racing great and current Gulf Western Oil Touring Car Masters regular John Bowe, who teams up alongside Tony Virag and Barry Sternbeck in the Wake Up Holden HSV.
Australian motorsport all-rounder Tony Quinn enters the race in the Local Legends Ford Mustang with TV personality and avid racer Grant Denyer and former British Touring Car Championship regular Tim Miles, the trio leading the 13-car A2 class.
A host of familiar names from previous Bathurst 6 Hour events make up the A1 class, including 2016 class winner and 2018 GT Trophy Series winner Jeremy Grey, who will race alongside Jeff Hume and Stephan Robinson in the JMG/Total Parts Plus Ford GTF.
Some of the other 15 teams in the largest class likely to be challenging include Garth Walden and Michael Auld in the Airtag/Sheargold Group Mercedes Benz A45, Jimmy Vernon and Mark Griffith in the Shockwave Signs Mitsubishi Lancer EVO RS and Anthony Soole and Dylan Thomas in the Property Investment Store BMW M4.
In the 13-car A2 class, the Greentech Gold Coast Ford Mustang GT of Coleby Cowham and Lindsay Kearns and Holden HSV Clubsport R8 of Chris Lillis, Josh Muggleton and Mathew Holt are the two big names to look out for throughout the weekend.
Other teams hoping to make an impact through the weekend include Jake Camilleri and Scott Nicholas in the Grand Prix Mazda Caboolture Mazda MPS3 and Holden HSV Astra VXR pilots Chris Holde, Madeline Stewart and David Ling in the C class, as well as Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series driver Ben Bargwanna and Jude Bargwanna in the Bargwanna Motorsport VW Golf GTi, who will be leading the D Class.
The category will enjoy three 60-minute practice sessions on Friday and Saturday morning, a split qualifying session on Saturday afternoon and the main event from Sunday morning at 11.30am AEST.
The entire six-hour race and key Shannons Motorsport Australia Championships categories will be broadcast via the screens of Seven and 7mate, while international audiences can tune in via motorsport.tv and Kiwi fans through Sky Sport New Zealand.
The Hi-Tec Oils Bathurst 6 Hour and Shannons Motorsport Australia Championships second round take place at Mount Panorama on 2-4 April.