SRO has revealed the 26 Pro class entries (below) for the 2018 Blancpain Endurance Cup season, ahead of the full entry list reveal after the deadline for entries at the end of February.
The field has been scaled back in Pro this year, to limit the level of “professionalisation” in the Endurance Cup over the past few years. The aim of this self-imposed 26-car cap on Pro entries has the aim of balancing the Pro-Am, Am fields in the series, after the Endurance Cup’s Pro class peaked at 32 cars during last season.
An exception to this rule will be made for the ‘blue-riband’ event on the calendar: the Total 24 Hours of Spa. Furthermore, any team fielding an additional Pro car at Spa will be eligible to enter this car in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup round at Paul Ricard prior to the race at Spa, as a chance to prepare.
As outlined in the list at the bottom of this story, this year’s Endurance Cup will feature Pro class representatives from a record number of 11 manufacturers: Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, BMW, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Lexus, McLaren, Mercedes-AMG, Nissan, and Porsche.
The field features cars entered by Blancpain regulars like M-Sport (with new Continental GT3s), Team WRT, Sainteloc, Grasser Racing, RJN Motorsport, Manthey Racing and ROWE Racing, as well as newcomers to the series’ top tier, R-Motorsport and Team Lazarus.
“I am pleased to announce our pre-selection of 26 Pro entries for the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup,” Stephane Ratel, founder and CEO of SRO Motorsports Group said. “We made a firm commitment to this limit and I am glad to say that we are standing by our word.
“While it would have been possible to exceed this number in the Endurance Cup, it was more important to show our renewed commitment to Pro-Am racing. I have been involved with all-Pro championships before, which strengthens my belief in maintaining a balance between professional and non-professional drivers.”
“I was pleased to hear the positive response we received when the cap was first revealed last year. I hope that there will be a similar reaction now that we have demonstrated the strength of our commitment.”
The full-season entry process will remain open until February 28th.