Blancpain Endurance Series gets set for 2013

470_2012_BES_Spa24_Audi#16_GGEurope’s most subscribed GT competition, the Blancpain Endurance Series, is back for a third season of exciting, multi-class racing in 2013. The key ingredients of passion, commitment and professionalism have been consistently associated with the series and these core values are set to continue and prosper further this season.

Upwards of 40-car grids are again expected, with some of the world’s iconic brands to be represented in the five-event series. Aston-Martin, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, McLaren, Ferrari, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Nissan and Porsche will do battle on legendary F1-standard circuits like Monza, Silverstone and Paul Ricard to fight for the series crown, which again is supported by prestigious watchmaker, Blancpain.

As well as the above-mentioned events, the jewel in the global GT crown will again take place over the final weekend of July, as the 24 Hours of Spa continues to be a key fixture in the motorsport calendar.

Last season, the 24 Hours of Spa saw 70,000 spectators flock to the beautiful Belgian circuit to watch an enthralling race, but also to savour the festival of entertainment off the track too. This approach to making it one of the favourite sporting events in mainland Europe will continue in 2013 with yet more variety and spectacle.

The final race of the year takes place in Germany, with the historic Nürburgring 1000kms fixture. This will be the first time that the Blancpain Endurance Series races under the famous 1000kms billing and it is set to be a fantastic finale to another spectacular season of competition.

Established fan favourites and series regular entrants will be joined by some new faces and new cars in 2013. The majority of these will be announced in the coming weeks in the build-up to the first round of the series at Monza. The entry list currently sees 27 cars already registered for the full Blancpain Endurance Series. Among those that have committed so far are: ART Grand Prix, Auto Sport Promotion/SOFREV, Beechdean Motorsport, Flex Box (formerly Insight Racing), Haribo Racing, Hexis Racing, Gulf Racing, Preci-Spark and TDS Racing.

Another noticeable change for the 2013 season will be the welcome addition of Pirelli to the Blancpain Endurance Series. One of the most prominent technical suppliers in world motorsport, the tyre manufacturer will add more excitement and competitiveness both on and off the track in 2013.

Consolidating upon the hugely successful 2012 season, the Blancpain Endurance Series will again set the benchmark in multi-class GT racing. Last year saw average grids of 54 cars, with 12 major automotive brands represented and an astonishing 66 cars lined up to take the start of the famous 24 Hour race at Spa. 2013 indicates already that these figures are likely to be beaten this season enabling further important steps in the growth of the Blancpain Endurance Series.

SRO Motorsport CEO and Founder, Stephane Ratel, commented: “Large grids, close racing and multiple winners is a very sound basis for any series but especially so, for one that has just single class of car – GT3. That is why the Blancpain Endurance Series continues to attract the best GT teams and drivers to race on some of the best tracks and at some of the most iconic events in motorsport. 2013 promises to be another excellent year of competition. I would like to thank our friends at Blancpain for their continuing commitment to the series concept and also to welcome Pirelli. They wanted to be part of the Blancpain Endurance Series action which indicates a very healthy championship going forward in to a third exciting year.”

(Image: Gerlach Delissen)

7 Comments on Blancpain Endurance Series gets set for 2013

  1. Seems like a non-press release, press release. Most of the teams mentioned run a Pro-Am driver line up. If teams can find funded drivers with bronze or silver rankings but otherwise fast (just lack experience) then they’ll be in the running for overall honors.

    But most of these teams (The Jones Brothers comes to mind) will run about 2-5 seconds off the ultimate pace which removes the impact of a Gold rated driver.

    I hope to see a OEM presences from Mercedes in Blancplain and Spa 24, there is already one in N24. Not sure why BMW or Benz didn’t bring a loaded gun last year and let Audi dominate.

  2. My FAVORITE series in the world.Ratel is a genius.

    Getting to see some GT3 cars at the Daytona 24 this weekend. Leaving frozen Minnesota for Daytona Beach tomorrow afternoon!

    Grand Am here and the SRO in Europe are the only ones in sportscar racing who get it.Sure wish the ACO would get it right soon.

  3. There are usually 13 to 20 Pro entries at each race, they race hard and have good endurance. A further 10 or so entries from the Pro Am class regularly challenge for top 10 places. The championship puts on a genuinely good show at most circuits, not just at Spa.

    It would be good to see BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, Ferrari, McLaren and Aston martin all support a proper challenge to Audi at Spa this year – their cars all have the potential so we live in hope. The championship also provides a fitting route to bring back the Nurburgring 1000 Kms, but that’s only my view.

    Wish I was going to Daytona……………next year…….

  4. I wouldn’t call too much for works support in GT3. One of the main reasons why GT3 is so successful is that the OEM’s only offer the basic vehicles and some technical support and leave racing to the privateer teams. This way, it is also financially attractive for many OEM’s, because they can sell the cars and the support (I suppose AMG made a good deal back in 2011 by selling around 12 SLS to different teams). Audi did a little more invest for last year’s 24h Spa, but in my opinion that was already too much, as I really like to see, like XJ8 wrote, a close fight between different teams and brands. So don’t spoil a successful privateer series by too much OEM influence!

  5. Well, Audi went “all-in” on the Rolex 24, adding factory drivers and support, and so far, it’s the privateer Porsches that are STILL out in front! The good news, though is the R8 is more competitive than it was last year. Personally, I can’t wait for the ALMS/Grand-Am merger, so we can see BMW and Audi go toe-to-toe here in the USA.

  6. I know its 10-13 Pro Cup cars and all are likely to appear in the new FIA GT series as well on off-weekends.

    Pro-Am does challenge for bottom Top 10 positions, nothing to get excited about though, seldom a battle for position as it turns out.

    The real fight is happening at the front of course…

    Yes Audi is coming loaded for bear at Spa last year, N24 last year and Daytona this year, won the race with Alex Job this afternoon, good showing but also Ferrari was serious this time and Porsche always is.

    I am not asking for factory run teams, I am asking for most of Benz and BMW’s top drivers to be available for Spa, as well at N24 which happens anyway. No reason why Black Falcon can put Pro drivers in its cars at Spa and win.

  7. @Anthony:
    Agree with that – meanwhile AMG has several professional drivers under direct contract who can be distributed among the teams running an SLS – Karl Wendlinger, Lance David Arnold, Maro Engel, Bernd Schneider, Alex Margaritis are all available, not to mention the DTM drivers like Vietoris, Ralf Schumacher or Wickens. And I’m sure it wouldn’t be hard to convince BMW DTM drivers like Farfus, Priaulx or Dirk Werner to drive a Vitaphone or Marc VDS BMW Z4 at Spa. All in all that would make a great entry list. Maybe even Timo Glock would like to combine his new BMW DTM contract with a Spa weekend?

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