> Yas Marina Circuit to host IGTC season finale in 2022 and ’23
> Joburg Kyalami 9 Hour moves to early 2023
> New Am class created for GT2 cars
The Gulf 12 Hours joins Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli for the first time later this year when the globetrotting GT3 series stages its season finale in Abu Dhabi on December 9-11.
A second appearance is also scheduled at the end of next year when IGTC’s calendar increases to five rounds on as many continents, something not seen since the last pre-pandemic campaign of 2019.
Intercontinental’s GT3 Pro entries will join the event’s existing Pro-Am and Am classes, cars from which can also be nominated to score points for their manufacturer. GT4 and Porsche 992 Cup classifications also feature in a truly multi-class GT contest that takes place for the 12th time later this year.
Adding Yas Marina Circuit’s long-running endurance race to IGTC’s schedule has been made possible by moving its recent season finale, the Joburg Kyalami 9 Hour, to February 23-25 next year when it slots between the LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour (February 3-5) and CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa (July 27-30).
Meanwhile, the Indianapolis 8 Hour Presented by AWS retains the same October weekend as this year’s event, which doubles as the Fanatec GT World Challenge America Powered by AWS season finale once again.
2023 also sees IGTC embrace GT2 for the first time. The cars, which have more power but less aero than their GT3 counterparts, form a new class for amateur drivers at all five rounds.
This week Maserati became the latest manufacturer to commit to the burgeoning class when it revealed the new MC20, which joins Audi, Brabham, KTM, Lamborghini and Porsche on GT2’s expanded grid next season.
Andrea Ficarelli, head of Driving Force Events, promoter of the Gulf 12 Hours: “It’s great recognition for the Gulf 12 Hours, which joins the club of the world’s most important GT endurance races by becoming part of the Intercontinental GT Challenge.
“Seeing some of the world’s top GT3 Pro cars competing for the Intercontinental GT Challenge title within the Gulf 12 Hours field adds a new dimension and shows how our event has become well established within global endurance racing over the last decade.
“As well as welcoming the Intercontinental GT Challenge, the Gulf 12 Hours will remain a premium end-of-season event for gentlemen drivers racing in GT3 Pro-Am and GT3 Am, as well as for teams entering GT4 and Porsche 992 Cup.
“We look forward to experiencing our first cooperation with SRO Motorsports Group after several years of friendly conversations, and we will put maximum effort into making this cooperation a success.”
Stephane Ratel, SRO Motorsports Group Founder and CEO: “The Gulf 12 Hours is the perfect event to close out this and next year’s Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli campaigns. There is no better GT race nor circuit in the Middle East, IGTC can return to Asia for the first time since 2019, we share the same tyre partner, and the region is important for manufacturer activation. What’s more, and without SRO’s involvement, Andrea Ficarelli and his team have already assembled a strong provisional entry list from which IGTC nominations can be drawn. This will be further bolstered over the coming months before we head to Yas Island in December.”
2022’s Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli campaign continues this weekend at the world’s biggest GT race: the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa.
REVISED 2022 CALENDAR
May 13-15 // LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour // Australasia
July 28-31 // TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa // Europe
October 6-8 // Indianapolis 8 Hour Powered by AWS // North America
December 9-11 // Gulf 12 Hours // Asia
February 3-5 // LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour // Australasia
February 23-25 // Joburg Kyalami 9 Hour // Africa
July 27-30 // CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa // Europe
October 5-7 // Indianapolis 8 Hour Presented by AWS // North America
TBC // Gulf 12 Hours // Asia