Factory drivers and late car changes have been announced as the 2022 Bathurst 12 heads towards live track action this Friday, starting the 13th of May.
Finalising its final driver line ups, Audi has thrown its support of Melbourne Performance centre by sending four gun factory drivers across two cars, partnering with some experienced local amateurs in a focused bid to take out this years event.
Local Bathurst area driver Brad Schumacher will be paired in the #74 car with Audi hot shoes Nathanael Berthon (France) and Kelvin van der Linde (South Africa). Van der Linde is no stranger to the mountain having raced in the 12 Hour in 2018, 2019 and 2020 in Audi R8 machinery. Berthon will compete in his first Bathurst 12 Hour event.
The Bend Motorsport Park owner and keen amateur Yasser Shahin shall be partnered in the #777 car with Swiss young gun Ricardo Feller and German veteran Markus Winkelhock. The latter will be making his eight consecutive Bathurst 12 Hour appearance having participated in Audi R8 GT3s since the 2014 edition of the race. He set the fastest race lap in 2015 but is yet to win on the mountain despite some strong previous results.
Lastly for Audi Sport Customer Racing Australia; Australian GT regular and former champion Tony Bates has announced Supercars championship leading pilots David Reynolds and Cameron Waters to share his Audi R8 LMS GT3 on ‘The Mountain’. All three drivers have previous Bathurst 12 Hour experience; Reynolds has six prior starts in the event, while Waters has one previous start in 2017, aboard the Strakka Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. The line up is a blend of highly experienced Mount Panorama campaigners and GT racing stalwarts and is one of the strongest combinations announced.
One of the first teams to announce its entry; Australian team RAM Racing had revealed its first generation specification 2016+ Mercedes-AMG GT3 for local drivers Michael Sheargold, Garth Walden and Brett Hobson in the Am class, however a late testing crash has damaged that car beyond immediate repair so the team has quickly acquired a newer Evo model in time for this year’s event. The car will feature a striking black and green livery.
Another popular entry is former V8 Supercars driver Craig Lowndes who is no stranger to the race having previously won the 2014 and 2017 editions in Ferrari GT3 equipment. He will be racing in one of 3 class B Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars supporting charity for prostate cancer. He last raced the event in 2020 in an Earl Bamber Motorsport Porsche 991.2 GT3R.
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