Sparesbox is hugely excited to be annnounced as an Official Sponsor of the 2017 LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour. Here at Sparesbox, we’ve always felt a strong affinity with the 12 Hour, and we couldn’t be more excited to be part of the most exciting, fastest-growing race in Australian Motorsport.
If you’ve heard snippets about the 12 Hour over the years and are still not sure whether it’s worth a watch come Feburary 3, here’s why you should be damn excited.
1. There Are More Types of Cars Than Ever
The LIQUI-MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour is becoming more and more renowned worldwide, especially now that it’s part of the Intercontinental GT Challenge. This means that more manufacturers and more teams are starting to take notice, and thanks to that we have more of the world’s finest race cars heading down under than ever before in the race’s history.
In addition to the Aston Martin Vantage GT8 (pictured above) that’s making a special appearance in the production category, 3 teams are bringing the V12 Vantage Gt3 to the 2017 event to compete in class A. The Ferrari 488 Gt3 is also heading down under as a replacement for the 458 that’s been so competitive over the last few years, while Trofeo Motorsport also have a spanking new Lamborghini Huracan GT3 ready to go.
Perhaps the biggest debut though is that of the new BMW M6 GT3, which makes its first ever appearance in Australian motorsport in the hands of Mark Skaife, Russell Ingall and Tony Longhurst.
All of this comes in addition to the cars that Aussies have come to know and love as part of the LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour, including the Nissan GT-R GT3, Porsche 911 GT3, Mercedes AMG GT GT3, Bentley Continental GT3, Audi R8 LMS, and last year’s winner, the McLaren 650S.
Class C is also stronger than ever, with GT4 cars beginning to take off as a genuinely competitive proving ground for younger drivers. KTM are bringing the insane X-Bow GT4 down, while Aston Martin will be making an appearance via the Vantage GT4, and Porsche are looking strong with their new Cayman GT4.
Quite the entry list!
2. The Fastest Cars Ever to Race Around Mt. Panorama
While most would assume that a Supercar is the quickest way of getting down Conrod Straight, a quick look at the timesheets of the Bathurst 12 Hour tells an entirely different story. Where David Reynolds’ lap record of 2:06.2769 is the fastest ever recorded in a Supercar, Gt3 cars have that well and truly stumped.
Enter: Shane Van Gisbergen. SVG’s pole position lap at last year’s LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour was not only over 5 seconds quicker than any supercar, but the fastest lap EVER recorded at Mt Panorama. His 2:01.5670 lap was faster than any Formula 3, production supercar or touring car that’s been seen on the track.
3. The Driver List Could Be the Best In Aussie Motorsport
While the Bathurst 1000 has its share of special guest drivers, no other race (except for a certain one down in Melbourne) has the kind of A-List talent that you get in the LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hour. And this year, the driver list is already more glittering than ever. Last year’s winner, Shane Van Gisbergen, will be joined on the grid by other Supercars talent such as Skaifey, Russell Ingall, Craig Lowndes, Steven Richards, Mark Winterbottom and Chaz Mostert.
A host of GT3 and ex-F1 drivers are also heading to Mt Panorama to add a little international flavour to the event. Timo Glock, Formula E competitor Maro Engel and 2016 DTM Champion Marco Wittman have already been locked in, while a host of other big names are being rumoured to be taking part.
If you’re still not convinced, check out the list of drivers STILL LOOKING for teams to take part the 2017 race. Guys like Bathurst 1000 champion Will Davison and Andre Heimgartner (who would normally walk into any V8 Supercars team) are still putting their name out for drives, competing with GT3 winners, ex-F1 drivers and Supercar legends for race seats.
4. There’s More on the Line Than Ever
Where once the Bathurst 12 Hour was simply a matter of pride, there’s now a whole host of spoils that go to those who emerge triumphant after 12 hours of intense racing. As well as the glory that comes with being named Bathurst 12 Hour Champion, from 2017 the winner of the Bathurst 12 Hour race will be awarded the Australian Tourist Trophy, one of Australian motorsport’s most historic prizes.
As well as this, Class A has been split into two seperate competitions, with a Pro/Am trophy being awarded to teams with a mixture of professional and amateur drivers. A solely professional class has also been established, where the true cream of the crop will compete with one another. This also means that teams will be able to compete with an unseeded driver for the first time in the race’s history.
As established in last year’s race, the LIQUI MOLY Bathurst 12 Hours will also join the Total 24 Hours of Spa and Sepang 12 Hours as a round in the Intercontinental GT Challenge. An offshoot of the prestigious Blancpain GT Series, the International GT Challenge has already been established as the most prestigious series in Endurance GT Racing.
5. You can Win Exclusive Tickets with Sparesbox!
As official sponsor we have 5 ‘Exclusive Experiences’ to give away, prizes include double weekend tickets, a VIP pit tour and Sparesbox vouchers.
Get in to win and join Team Sparesbox trackside: Win Sparesbox Tickets