Australian GT have revealed a comprehensive race calendar for the 2020 season, a calendar that includes events for the CAMS Australian GT Championship, the CAMS Australian Endurance Championship, a dedicated Championship for GT4 cars that also includes stand-alone events, and the pending Pirelli AGT SuperSprint at Mount Panorama at season’s end, a circuit that will play a significant role in the new season calendar with Bathurst appearing four times next year.
The new structure falls very much in line with what GT racing is all about – the world’s best supercars competing in high profile events, including – the biggest event on the annual motorsport calendar – the iconic Bathurst 1000.
“At this point you will hear that.. “After consultation with stakeholders, this, that and the other, Australian GT have listened and come up with this great calendar..” The fact is, this is the type of calendar I’ve wanted since joining AGT as a competitor 14 years ago. This is a national championship that visits five States in six events – including Bathurst in spades,” Australian GT category rights holder Jim Manolios explained.
“There has been a lot of discussion take place with respect to how we improve the program and provide teams what they were looking for – well if this calendar doesn’t get you excited, then check into the nearest hospital because you probably don’t have a heart beat!
“I’m proud of all the hard work everyone in my team has put in behind the scenes to create what I consider to be one of the best Australian GT calendars on record.”
The 2020 CAMS Australian GT Championship will get underway with one of the greatest challenges in world motorsport – two 60-minute races at Mount Panorama across Easter, as revealed earlier this year.
From Bathurst the championship will then be exclusively on the Supercars program in a partnership that goes well beyond just a slot on the calendar (for which more will be revealed in coming days). A return to Western Australia in May will be followed by a long winter off-season, before the sprint series lines up again at The Bend Motorsport Park in September.
October will see a double-header with Supercars once more, beginning with the event of the year, the 2020 Bathurst 1000, with two more 60-minute races across the four-day program.
The series will then return to the Gold Coast, before concluding with the Sandown Supercars event for a fifth round alongside Australia’s most popular category, all events contested with the traditional 60-minute sprint race format including compulsory mid-race pit stops.
“That’s six impressive events for Australian GT in 2020 that sees us at Bathurst twice. With the recently revealed CAMS Australian Endurance Championship beginning with the Liqui Moly 12 Hour, then the likely continuity of the season ending Pirelli AGT SuperSprint at Bathurst, that’s four visits to one of the world’s great circuits in one season, and in anyone’s language, that’s very, very welcome!”
The GT3 exclusive 2020 CAMS Australian GT Championship will be joined by two other categories, both of whom will see national champions crowned at seasons end; Australian GT Trophy Series (for older generation GT3 cars) and Trofeo Challenge (for one make GT/Sports and Invited endurance cars), whilst GT4 will enjoy its own program (which will be released in coming days).
Driver grading’s will also be revised for 2020 as previously revealed, with Australian GT adopting completely the FIA driver-ranking system of Platinum-Gold-Silver-Bronze, whilst the SRO (Stephane Ratel Organisation) system of driver classification for events will also be adopted, with Pro/Am, Silver Cup and Am driver combinations in GT3, and Am and Silver Cup for GT4. Both AGT Trophy Series and Trofeo Challenge will be restricted to Bronze and Silver classified drivers.
“I’m happy to say that there are more elements to this calendar than we can reveal right now,” Manolios added. “Suffice to say, we believe we are heading in the right direction for next year and providing every reason we can for drivers to get their cars out racing. At the end of the day, we all invested in the sport to go racing – not to play politicians, not to invest in exotic race cars, but to enjoy the best racing our budgets can afford, and enjoy our weekends.
“Motorsport in some of the greatest cars ever built at great events is what we want to provide, and that’s what our 2020 calendar plans to deliver!”
2020 CAMS Australian GT Championship
Rnd#1 – 10-12 April, Bathurst, NSW
Rnd#2 – 15-17 May, Barbagallo, WA [Supercars]
Rnd#3 – 18-20 September, The Bend Motorsport Park, SA [Supercars]
Rnd#4 – 8-11 October, Bathurst, NSW [Supercars]
Rnd#5 – 30 Oct.-1 Nov. Gold Coast, Queensland [Supercars]
Rnd#6 – 20-22 November, Sandown, Victoria [Supercars]
Source. Motorsport Media