> International talent and reigning champions galore ready for IGTC’s season opener
> Provisional entry list: LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour
A star-studded field packed with some of the best racing talent from around the world will tackle the 2023 LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour, which also kicks off this year’s Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli campaign next weekend (February 3-5).
The final field includes 18 teams from six countries, as well as eight world-class manufacturers including Audi, BMW, Mercedes-AMG and Porsche.
Entries eligible to score IGTC points will be confirmed during raceweek.
The 84 drivers hail from 15 different countries and represent some of the world's best racing talent.
Final additions to the field include 2022 Allan Simonsen Pole Award winner and Supercars star Chaz Mostert, who will drive with Fraser Ross and Liam Talbot in an Audi R8 LMS GT3.
And the experienced Josh Hunt has joined Ross Poulakis, Kevin Tse and Jonathan Hui aboard the Harrolds Volante Rosso Motorsport Mercedes-AMG GT3, which has moved to the Silver class.
An incredible array of current champions from major championships and endurance races around the globe in 2022 fill the grid, one of the most talent-rich in 12 Hour history.
The headline act is the Bathurst debut of seven-time MotoGP World Champion and one of the most recognisable names in all of motorsport, Valentino Rossi.
The Italian will drive a BMW M4 GT3 for Team WRT and brings his seven world titles and 89 victories in the premier two-wheeled class to his four-wheeled Australian debut.
Rossi will be up against some of the best GT drivers in the world, including an incredible number of previous victors on the Mountain.
The 10 former LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour winners on the grid account for 13 victories in total at Australia's International Enduro.
That includes defending champions Kenny Habul, Jules Gounon and Luca Stolz, who will return to defend their 2022 crown with SunEnergy1, which also accounts for one of Mercedes-AMG’s four IGTC nominations.
The 2023 grid includes the current Repco Supercars Champion, the reigning DTM champion and the current IMSA GTD Pro class champions from last year's season in the United States' top Sports Car series.
The Sprint and Endurance Champions from Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia are both represented.
Its European counterpart is arguably the toughest championship in the world for GT3 cars, and its Overall, Sprint and Endurance championship winners from 2022 are all included in this year’s Bathurst field, as is the winner of Germany's ADAC GT Masters Championship.
IGTC’s reigning champion, Dani Juncadella, as well as its Pro-Am Challenge winner, Kenny Habul, are also on the list.
2022 winners from key endurance races around the globe will also take part.
As well as the defending Bathurst 12 Hour winners, last year's victors of the Nürburgring 24 Hours, the CrowdStrike 24 Hours of Spa, the GTD class at the Sebring 12 Hour and the prestigious Macau GT Cup also feature.
Aussie fans will have plenty to cheer for, with the best and brightest from the Repco Supercars Championship represented, led by defending champion and Repco Bathurst 1000 winner Shane van Gisbergen.
Between them, Supercars drivers in the field account for 350 Supercars / ATCC race wins and 12 championships.
In Australia, local audiences will be able to watch the race live and ad-break free on Fox Sports and Kayo Sports, with live, free-to-air coverage on the Seven Network and 7plus around Australia.
Coverage begins at 12:30pm AEDT Saturday on both networks, with coverage of LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour qualifying, followed by support race action and the Pirelli Top-10 Shootout.
Fox, Kayo and Seven will then be live from 5:30am AEDT on Sunday, February 5 for the race start, with coverage continuing through to 6:00pm local that day.
New Zealand audiences will be able to view via Sky Sports NZ, while global fans will be able to watch on YouTube via SRO's GT World platform and other international streaming partners.
Radio Show Ltd, home of Radio Le Mans, will also carry the international broadcast in sound and vision, including exclusive audio coverage of Friday's practice sessions.
FACT FILE: 2023 LIQUI MOLY BATHURST 12 HOUR
• 18 teams, from 6 countries: Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Belgium, Germany & the United States.
• Eight brands: Mercedes-AMG, Audi, Porsche, BMW, Lamborghini, KTM, SIN, MARC Cars
• 84 drivers from 15 countries: Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Belgium, Brazil, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, France, Spain, Austria, The Netherlands, Malaysia (Johor), Hong Kong, Canada
• 10 different drivers representing 13 Bathurst 12 Hour wins: including two-time winners Craig Lowndes, Christopher Mies and Jules Gounon.
• 6 Allan Simonsen Pole Award winners including Chaz Mostert: the only two-time Pole winner in the GT3 era of the race.
• 350 Supercars Championship / ATCC Race wins. 12 Supercars / ATCC championships, including 2022 winner Shane van Gisbergen.
• 7 MotoGP World Championships + 89 Premier Class wins.
• Repco Bathurst 1000: 6 former winners for a total of 21 wins, including 2022 winner Shane van Gisbergen.
• Total 24 Hours of Spa: 5 former winners for a total of 6 wins, including 2022 winners Jules Gounon, Daniel Juncadella and Raffaele Marciello.
• Nürburgring 24 Hours: 5 former winners for a total of 8 wins, including 2022 winners Dries Vanthoor and Frederic Vervisch.
• Indianapolis 8 Hours: 2022 winners Daniel Juncadella, Raffaele Marciello.
• Kyalami 9 Hours: 2022 winners Jules Gounon, Raffaele Marciello.
• Sebring 12 hours: 2022 GTD Pro winner, Nicky Catsburg.
• Daytona 24 Hours: 2022 GTD Pro winners Matt Campbell, Mathieu Jaminet.
• 2022 Repco Supercars Champion – Shane van Gisbergen
• 2022 DTM Champion – Sheldon van der Linde
• 2022 IMSA GTD Pro Class Champions - Matt Campbell and Mathieu Jaminet
• 2022 Intercontinental GT Challenge Champion – Daniel Juncadella
• 2022 Intercontinental GT Challenge Pro-Am Champion – Kenny Habul
• 2022 GT World Challenge Australia Champion – Yasser Shahin
• 2022 GT World Challenge Australia Enduro Champion – Prince Jefri Ibrahim
• 2022 GT World Challenge Europe Champion – Raffaele Marciello
• 2022 GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup Champions – Raffaele Marciello, Daniel Juncadella, Jules Gounon
• 2022 GT World Challenge Asia Pro-Am champion – Prince Jefri Ibrahim
• 2022 GT World Challenge Europe Sprint Cup Champions – Charles Weerts, Dries Vanthoor
• 2022 ADAC GT Masters Champion – Raffaele Marciello
• 2022 Macau GT Cup winner – Maro Engel
• 2022 TCR Australia Champion – Tony D’Alberto