McLaren 720S GT3 to Race in the World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup Again
The McLaren 720S GT3 is all set to dominate the GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup for the very first time. And if that's not enough, it's set to make its first appearance in the blue-riband Spa 24 hours.
GT World Challenge Endurance Cup was formerly known as Blancpain Endurance Series 2011 to 2015 and Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup from 2016 to 2019. This sports racing series features production road vehicles modified as grand tourer racing cars. It has been sponsored primarily by Swiss watchmaker Blancpain since 2018, but was discontinued in 2019. This led the series to change its name to GT World Challenge Europe.
Meanwhile, the 24 Hours of Spa is an endurance racing event for cars. It's held annually since 1924 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Stavelot, Belgium, and currently sponsored by Total S.A.
McLaren, who first built the first-ever, in-house GT3 will compete in what was once known as the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup with British GT Champion Optimum Motorsport.
The team enters the Spa 24 in July Hours as part of the pro class five round series. They will share this with fellow factory drivers Rob Bell, Joe Osborne, and Ollie "McLaren Young Professional" Wilkinson.
This will be a first for McLaren to race in the series since 2018. That year saw the CRS GT run the Garage 59 squad acquired a pair of 650S GT3s-- including one in the pro class.
The Garage 59 team is part of the CRS GT organisation that developed the 650S for racing. It won the BGTS Endurance Cup title in 2016 with Shane van Gisbergen, Bell, and Come Ledogar.
"The decision to enter the Endurance Cup is a big step for all involved, and it is the ultimate challenge in GT3 racing for the drivers, the team and the car," said McLaren Automotive director of motorsport Ian Morgan.
He also added that he was "happy to welcome Optimum Motorsport to the McLaren customer racing family".
Optimum Motorsport, which is based in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, had won British GTs using the Aston Martin for the past two years.
It won the 2018 title with Jonny Adam and Flick Haigh with the Aston Martin V12 Vantage.