The International GT Open’s first race meeting of the season sees a high quality 24 car grid of GT3 machinery assemble at Estoril this weekend.
No fewer than nine GT3 marques are represented on the grid with Lexus making their Championship debut, an RC-F GT3 apiece from Emil Frey Lexus Racing, below top (Albert Costa and Phillipp Fromenwiler) and Farnbacher Racing, below bottom (Dominik and Mario Farnbacher).
There’s a first appearance in the Series too from a Bentley with the ex Bute Motorsport GT Cup Continental GT3 from Jordan Racing appearing for Jordan Witt and Chris Stockton.
Solaris Motorsport return with their #007 Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3 for Francesco Sini and Mauro Calamia and there is a solo Porsche 997 GT3 R entered too for local man Antonio Nogueira.
Four Ferrari 488 GT3s are listed: FF Corse field Ivor Dunbar and Johnny Mowlem, AF Corse have a car apiece under their core brand and the Spirit of Race banner, the former for Marco Cioci and Pierguiseppe Perazini, the latter for Miguel Ramos and ex ELMS GT Champion Mikkel Mac.
SF Racing’s 488 fields Andrea Caldarelli and Fu Songyang.
Lamborghini too are represented by a quartet of Huracan GT3s:
Imperiale Racing account for two of them, their #1 car for Thomas Biagi and Giovanni Venturini, the sister #23 Lamborghini for Vito Postiglione and Andrea Fontana.
FFF Racing team by ACM are entered with a single car for Hiroshi Hamaguchi and Vitantonio Liuzzi whilst Ráton Racing field Chinese driver Kang Ling and Italian Edoardo Liberati.
Five Mercedes AMG GT3s are listed, a pair for GT Open regulars Sports and You, Marcelo Hahn and Allan Khodair produce an all Brazialn line-up for Spanish outfit Drives School, an Austrian duo (Alexander Hrachowina and Martin Konrad) race for MS Racing whilst Tom Onslow Cole and Valentin Pierburg (below) run for 24H Series regulars SPS Performance.
2016 Series runners up Teo Martin return, running under the RACE/ BMW Team Teo Martin banner with a trio of BMW M6 GT3s, Antonio Felix da Costa making up one of a pair of all Portuguese duos with Lourenco Belrao de Helga, the second duo an AM class effort for Filipe Barreiros and Francisco Guedes. Swede Victor Bouveng and Spaniard Fran Rueda complete the three.
Finally there’s a trio of McLaren 650S GT3s too, the third placed car from 2016 from Balfe Motorsport returns for Shaun Balfe and McLaren GT factory man Rob Bell (below). Garage 59 are back too with a pair of cars, the #24 for Michael Benham and Duncan Tappy, the #88 for Alexander West and Côme Ledogar.
Both races streamed live on the Series website as well as shown on BT Sport live and in HD. Race 1 will be shown on BT Sport 3 on Saturday before Race 2 on Sunday on BT Sport 2.