Bentley Motorsport has confirmed that Drivers’ Championship leaders Jules Gounon, Jordan Pepper and Maxime Soulet will contest 2020’s three remaining Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli rounds as part of its re-jigged title assault.
The British manufacturer is now set to enter the globe-trotting series with several of its customer teams after scaling back its official factory involvement in light of the global coronavirus pandemic.
The trio, who lead the standings after claiming Bentley’s maiden Intercontinental victory in February’s Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour, join K-PAX Racing at the Indianapolis 8 Hour and Total 24 Hours of Spa this October before comprising one of M-Sport’s two entries at the season-closing Kyalami 9 Hour in mid-December.
Bentley has also confirmed that five Continental GT3s entered by its GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS customers K-PAX, CMR and Team Parker Racing will all be nominated to score #IntGTC Manufacturer points at Spa.
“The Intercontinental GT Challenge is the pinnacle of global GT racing and, as a manufacturer, it’s where we should be competing,” said Bentley’s Director of Motorsport, Paul Williams. “We are now able to continue to fight for the title but utilising our expanding family of elite customer racing teams. To have four teams all potentially contributing to the title battle is really exciting – it would be a fantastic achievement for our customer racing programme if we could win this together.
“K-PAX Racing have adjusted to competing in Europe well but it also feels right for them to contest the USA round of the series. Our works drivers deserve to continue their championship-title bid so we are grateful that they agreed to take all three rather than field their own squad.”
Williams also explained the decision for M-Sport to oversee Bentley’s Intercontinental entries on a customer basis at Kyalami:
“I think everyone will be delighted that M-Sport will be racing two Continental GT3s at Kyalami,” he added. “We couldn’t have grown this customer racing programme without their support and sacrifice, so to see them back on the grid as a customer team at the end of the year is something that we at Bentley didn’t expect and that I’m sure the fans at home will be excited about. Let’s hope they can end the season in the same way it started!”
Round two of this year’s Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli campaign takes place at Indianapolis on October 2-4.