The 17th season of the International GT Open is set to get underway this weekend at Estoril with a 19 car GT3 field.
In the Pro class, Oregon Team will make its debut in the GT Open with Lamborghini and joining as the SuperTrofeo Europe reigning champions. One of their pair of multi-colored Huracans will be in the hands of former Euroformula champion Leonardo Pulcini and of Benji Hites, who won at Monza last year in his GT Open debut. The other is entrusted to Switzerland’s Kevin Gilardoni and another EFO graduate, Dutchman Glenn Van Berlo.
The McLaren 720S GT3 of Optimum Motorsport debuts in the Pro class with Nick Moss and Joe Osborne, the same pair has finished third in Pro-Am twice in the last two years.
GetSpeed Performance Mercedes return after a one-year hiatus fielding one car in each class.
In Pro 2020 Ligier European Series JS @R Champion Sebastien Baud is joined by Steve Jans. In Pro-Am, where the fiercest battles are anticipated, the GetSpeed car will be in the hands of Moritz Kranz and Jeanine Shoffner, a returnee to the series.
There will be three other AMGs in Portugal. New team Theeba Motorsport will contest its very first race ever with the help of SPS automotive performance, and enter one of the very first Saudi female drivers to compete internationally, 30-year-old Reema Al-Juffali, who will be paired with Adam Christodoulou.
SPS automotive performance, a former champion in the class, is also back for a full campaign, with the Swiss duo composed of Yannick Mettler and Dexter Müller.
Graduating from GT4 racing comes Team GT, with team boss and driver Bernhard Laber at the wheel of their Mercedes AAMG GT3 together with Switzerland’s Alain Valente.
Returning to the series for a four-car full campaign is Kessel Racing. The successful Swiss team, a four-time champion in the former GTS class, remains faithful to Ferrari and has three 488 Evo in Pro-Am, entrusted to very interesting pairs. Italian GT Am champion Murat Cuhadaroglu, from Turkey, is teaming up with David Fumanelli, alongside British pair Omar Jackson-Charlie Hollings and Roman Ziemian-Axil Jefferies.
Another Ferrari is entered for Marcin Jedlinski-Karol Basz by Olimp Racing, as the Polish team has switched to 488 Evo machinery during the winter.
Representing Lamborghini in the class is Il Barone Rampante. The historic Italian team raises its game as Giuseppe Cipriani, a double lone Am champion in the last three years will now race paired by former Italian GT champion Alex Frassineti.
The Am class will cater for a very interesting battle between Ferrari and Mercedes cars, each brand being represented by three cars.
The Prancing Horse can count on its most significant customer team, AF Corse, fielding one car for Laurent de Meeus-Jamie Stanley, who have both shone in Ferrari Challenge competitions.
Olimp Racing,welcomes back the pairing of Stanislaw Jedlinski-Krystian Korzeniowski.
Kessel Racing sees the return of “the Doc”, alias Stephen Earle. The evergreen American is paired with Italian rising star Erwin Zanotti.
GetSpeed boss Adam Osieka, who will share the wheel of the team’s Am class AMG with his long-time friend Kiki Sak Nana, a drifting champion and a national star in his home country, Thailand.
Mann-Filter Team Landgraf is debuting in the series but fielding a familiar pair: Austrians Alex Hrachowina and Martin Konrad are back to fight for the class title, after collecting second, third and fourth honours in 2019-17.
Last but not least, Spanish outfit Baporo Motorsport is also back for a full campaign with its AMG for Dani Díaz-Varela, again paired on this occasion by Jaume Font.19 Cars For GT Open At Estoril first appeared on dailysportscar.com.