For many motorsport enthusiasts, the wait since the Hankook 24H DUBAI in early January has been quite long, but finally, the start of the 24H SERIES European Championship season beckons. This week’s Hankook 12H MUGELLO (29-30 March) sees the 24H TCE SERIES and the 24H GT SERIES, both powered by Hankook, returning to the beautiful circuit in the rolling hills of Tuscany after a one-year absence. An impressive field of almost 60 cars is expected for the race once around the clock. The A6 class is spearheading the GT field with 19 cars entered, the TCR class is at the top of the TCE field with no less than 13 cars.
To popular demand, the Mugello circuit is back on the calendar for the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook. Dutch agency CREVENTIC, organisers and promoters of the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook in co-operation with the DNRT (Dutch National Racing Team) first organised a race at the track in Tuscany in 2014 and the venue has been frequently featured on the calendar ever since. This year’s race again marks the start of the European Championship season in the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook.
During the most recent 24H SERIES event held at Mugello two years ago, Czech outfit Scuderia Praha came out on top and scored a win for Ferrari in the home event of the legendary Italian sports car brand. For this year’s race, no less than six Ferraris have been entered, the highest number of race cars with the prancing horse to compete in a CREVENTIC event to date. Scuderia Praha is back, albeit now under the Bohemia Engery racing with Scuderia Praha moniker while other Ferrari teams are Rinaldi Racing and Team Wochenspiegel Monschau. In the A6 class, they will be facing competition from teams representing Audi, Lamborghini, Mercedes-AMG and Porsche. A pair of KTMs is running in the SPX class. Seven Porsche Cup cars have been entered for the 991 class. Two BMWs and another KTM in the SP2 class and five GT4 cars from Aston Martin, BMW and Mercedes-AMG round out the GT field.
Back in 2017, there was no separate TCE class yet, but the best placed touring car in the race at Mugello at the time was a BMW entered by Bonk Motorsport. For this year’s Hankook 12H MUGELLO, the German team has announced its presence again with no less than five cars across the GT4, TCR and A3 categories. The TCR category is at the forefront of the TCE segment in the field, featuring Audi, Cupra, Honda, Hyundai, SEAT and Volkswagen. In the SP3 class, a Vortex silhouette car will be up against a BMW and a Porsche while a BMW, a Honda and a Peugeot in the A3 class round out the field. There will be separate starting groups for the GT segment and the TCE segment.
KTM X-Bows have been regular competitors in the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook over the years, but at Mugello, the X-Bow Battle will be serving as the official support category with two races of 25 minutes each. The KTM series has its free practice sessions and qualifying on Thursday, 28 March already, alternating with two optional private tests for competitors in the 24H SERIES. Activities on Friday, 29 March, start with the first race of the X-Bow Battle, followed by Free Practice for the 24H SERIES from 10.05-11.35 hrs. Qualifying for the TCE segment is scheduled from 12.05-12.35, GT teams have their qualifying from 12.45-13.15 hrs. After the second X-Bow Battle race, the first three hours of the Hankook 12H MUGELLO will be held from 15.30-18.30 hrs, with an intervention break under parc fermé conditions during the evening and the night. Racing resumes on Saturday, 30 March, at 9.00 hrs, with the finish at 18.00 hrs.
Source. Creventic/Photo. Petr Frýba