McLaren targets GT4 entry

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McLAREN GT boss Andrew Kirkaldy has flagged interest in running their latest 570S GT4 in the 2017 Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.

In an interview with www.dailysportscar.com, Kirkaldy confirmed the defending Bathurst champions were keen to return to the Mountain in 2017.

Early interest in McLaren’s first GT4 racer – a baby brother to the wildly successful 650S GT3 – has been huge in the UK where the car has tasted early success in the British GT Championship.

“I think that GT4 is a surprise,” Kirkaldy told Dailysportscar.com. “We knew that there was going to be interest in GT4, but we didn’t think it would be quite so high.

“We’d like to take a GT4 there and run it in Class C with a customer, if we could get granted the entry. “It will probably come down to how many entries there are available as more and more people want to do it each year.”

Kirkaldy also indicated that the brand would be keen to see cars in both the Pro and Pro/Am classes next year.

“I think at the end of the day, we are a customer Motorsport organisation though, and we certainly wouldn’t be going there just for a Pro car, we would have a Pro Am car if we were going. I would want it.”

TEKNO Autosports runs McLaren’s Australian program, running three cars in the Australian GT Championship and Australian Endurance Championships this year.

The brand has been dominating of late with Grant Denyer and Nathan Morcom combining to win the Phillip Island 101 GT race, while Klark Quinn and Tony Walls won the pair of GT Championship races last weekend in Townsville in their customer cars.

MEANWHILE, www.speedcafe.com has reported that Craft-Bamboo Racing is working towards a two-car entry next year with Porsche’s GT3-R.

“Bathurst is in our plans but until we put the entry in we are not confirmed, as we are trying to put the sponsors, budgets and drivers together,” double B12hr winner and team owner Darryl O’Young told Speedcafe.com.

“We have the intention to come and we have a lot of support from Australian fans and we really want to be back there. It is something that we will confirm pretty soon. We will try to firm it up as soon as possible.

“The Bathurst 12 Hour is a race that has always been high on our target and we want to be there to succeed. We have had a podium in the past and it really is unfinished business for the team.”

O’Young won his pair of 12 Hour victories driving for the factory supported Audi team, before returning in 2015 with Craft-Bamboo Racing to finish third driving an Aston Martin Vantage V12 with Alex MacDowell and Stefan Mucke.

Their podium was notable for a chaotic final lap fight for second, third and fourth with the Phoenix Racing Audi and Bentley Team M-Sport entries that came to a head in the final corner of the race.