The world's largest GT race will have a sizable contingent of North American-based talent when the field takes the green for the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa this weekend.
The race, which serves as the curtain-opener for the globetrotting Intercontinental GT Challenge powered by Pirelli as well as the third round of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup powered by AWS, is the crown jewel in SRO competition and brings together an impressive assembly of driving talent and high-quality teams each year.
The 2021 edition featured 59 entries spread across four classes (Pro Cup, Silver Cup, Pro-Am Cup, Am Cup) with representation from nine GT3 manufacturers and connections to SRO America abound throughout the entry list.
For the second-consecutive year DXDT Racing drivers George Kurtz and Colin Braun will make the trek to Belgium and join forces with the standout SPS Automotive Performance squad. The American duo, who currently lie second in the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS Pro-Am standings, will team up with Austrian driver Dominik Baumann and German pilot Valentin Pierburg in a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo in the Pro-Am Cup class.
The same quartet of drivers had a strong run to sixth in class in the 2020 edition of the race and aim to build on that success in their second attempt at the twice-around-the-clock classic.
inception racing, which made it's GT World Challenge America debut at Circuit of The Americas in May, has entered its McLaren 720S GT3 this weekend as part of its full-season GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup campaign.
The squad's North American driver pairing of Brendan Iribie and Ollie Millroy, who also race together in several European championships, will be joined by Jordan Pepper and Kevin Madsen.
Pepper, who leads the GT World Challenge America Pro standings as part of K-PAX Racing's driver lineup, has plenty of experience at Circuit Spa-Francorchamps including a top ten run last year as part of K-PAX's factory-backed effort for Bentley.
Madsen, meanwhile, is an accomplished racer, stunt driver, and driving coach who rounds out a stout Pro-Am Cup lineup for Inception this weekend.
Elsewhere in the field can be found Pepper's GT World Challenge America co-driver Andrea Caldarelli. The ace Lamborghini pilot is listed as part of Orange 1 FFF Racing Team's Pro Cup lineup that figures to challenge for overall honors on behalf of the Italian manufacturer.
Fellow Lamborghini factory driver Giacomo Altoe, who has raced in GT World Challenge America for TR3 Racing this season, is part of another standout Pro-Cup Lamborghini entry for Emil Frey Racing that is among the favorites to see the checkered flag first after 24 hours of racing.
The ultra-competitive SIlver Cup class is where American outfit Winward Racing's Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo can be found. The Texas-based squad, which has an ancillary base in Germany, is coming off of an overall win in the most recent GT World Challenge America round at VIRginia International Raceway with Canadian Mikael Grenier and American Russell Ward behind the wheel.
Winward's lineup is due to be completed by Philip Ellis, a winner in DTM competition last weekend at the Lausitzring for the team, raced alongside Ward in the Sonoma and COTA rounds of the American championship earlier this year. The trio is a regular contender in GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup this year as well.
American driver Don Yount, meanwhile, is one quarter of famed BMW squad Walkenhorst Motorsport's Am Cup BMW M6 GT3 entry.
There will be no shortage of familiar names and faces for fans of SRO America racing to keep tabs on this weekend. Follow the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa live in its entirety at the GT World YouTube channel beginning at 10:30 am EDT Saturday morning. For more information, visit the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa site - https://www.totalenergies24hours.com/