The popular Jim Richards Endurance Trophy will get underway this weekend as Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia presented by Pirelli heads to Winton Motor Raceway for its third round of the 2017 season.
A field of 15 911 GT3 Cup cars will line up at the rural Victorian venue for the three-race weekend, the first of which being a 35-lap endurance event that will commence the Jim Richards Endurance Trophy for the 2017 season. The remaining two Endurance Trophy races will be held at Sydney Motorsport Park and Queensland Raceway at the following two rounds.
Saturday’s 35-lap race will be followed by two 12-lap races on Sunday to conclude the Winton round.
The event comes just two weeks after the series’ second round at Phillip Island, held on May 26-28. The event saw Porsche Junior Jordan Love and young gun Brenton Grove share outright race victories, but also the emergence of several Elite Class talents, including Nick Karnaros, Brett Boulton and Ben Stack.
Two Phillip Island race victories handed Love the lead of the Outright and Professional Class standings, passing Round 1 class winner John Steffensen in the process.
While Phillip Island featured new names at the head of the Elite Class, the class standings remained unchanged at the top – Sam Shahin extended his class lead to 20 points over Phillip Island class round winner Karnaros. Shahin’s series lead looks set to increase at Winton with the absence of Karnaros, though several experienced rivals – including John Karytinos, Anthony Gilbertson, John and Phil Morriss and Ross McGregor – will look to close the gap at the head of the class standings.
Three drivers will make their GT3 Cup Challenge debut at Winton – Peter Major, Marcel Zalloua and Andrew Goldie.
Major enters his debut Porsche round with proven success on Australian race tracks; the West Australian heads to Winton with Formula Ford and, more recently, sports car racing experience, claiming both a Class B podium at the 2017 Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour and Australian GT race wins at the series’ Adelaide and Perth rounds this season.
Fellow West Australian Goldie also brings Formula Ford experience to the Porsche championship, mainly at Perth’s Barbagallo Raceway, while Zalloua has been a regular in the New South Wales Production Sports Car Championship since the 2014 season.
1. #13 Sam Shahin (Elite Class) HTFU
2. #14 Peter Major (Professional Class)
3. #16 John Karytinos (Elite Class) Richmonds Automotive
4. #17 Marcel Zalloua (Elite Class) 360 Motorsport/Valmont
5. #19 Anthony Gilbertson (Elite Class) Hallmark Homes
6. #22 Andrew Goldie (Class B)
7. #23 Brenton Grove (Professional Class) Grove Hire
8. #29 Rob Woods (Elite Class) Platinum Nightclub
9. #34 John Morriss (Elite Class) Motorsport Leasing P/L
10. #78 John Steffensen (Professional Class) Zagame Autosport
11. #79 Jordan Love (Professional Class) Sonic Motor Racing/Quintis
12. #84 Brett Boulton (Elite Class) Bold Living
13. #87 David Greig (Class B)
14. #88 Phil Morriss (Elite Class) Morriss Racing Services
15. #99 Ross McGregor (Elite Class) Southern Star Windows