INTERNATIONAL
Wednesday, Oct 9 05:17pm
AUTHOR: Simon Chapman

Keeping up with the Kiwis, your guide to the action: October 10–13

Arguably the biggest and best weekends in motor racing is upon on. Headlining the weekend is the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 where seven Kiwi drivers will look to take outright honours.

 

There’s another big endurance race on this weekend too. Petit Le Mans will see Earl Bamber battle for the Drivers’ Championship in the IMSA WeatherTech Championship. Scott Dixon and Tom Blomqvist will look to mix things up for BMW and Ford respectively.

 

Further afield, young Red Bull driver Liam Lawson will tackle the final round of the Euroformula Open Championship where he can claim second overall in the points.

 

All times listed below are in New Zealand Standard Time.

 

Supercars

Bathurst 1000

What: Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000

Where: Mount Panorama, Australia

When: R SUN 1:30 PM

How to follow: Sky Sport | Live Timing

 

Shell V-Power Racing Team driver Scott McLaughlin says this year is his best chance yet to win the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

 

This weekend will mark McLaughlin’s eighth attempt at trying to win the big one at Mount Panorama. In his eight starts, he’s claimed just one podium, which came last year alongside Alexandre Prémat in the final year of the Ford Falcon FG X.

 

Unlike the seven previous years, McLaughlin comes into this year’s race in the strongest position possible behind the wheel of his Ford Mustang.

 

With 16 wins and two additional podiums from 22 races, the Kiwi holds a staggering 598-point lead in the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship.

 

His lead is so large that he could DNF the Bathurst 1000 and the two Gold Coast 600 races and at worst only be two points behind Shane van Gisbergen if the Red Bull Holden Racing Team driver were to win all thee races.

 

With such a commanding lead, McLaughlin said his approach to the Bathurst 1000 this year is totally different.

 

“I want to try and enjoy it this week,” McLaughlin said on his podcast Balls & Bumpers.

 

“I’ve come into it with a position that not many championship leaders have been in before, especially not myself. I’m a couple of rounds ahead on points. I’ve got an opportunity to just enjoy the whole week and soak it all up and have a real crack at it.

 

“I’m really calm about that and really excited. I know that if we do a good job we’ll be there or thereabouts. I think what’s going to keep me going is the vibe I get from everything. I’m really excited to enjoy it this week.”

 

CLICK HERE to read the full preview

 

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Petit Le Mans

What: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

Where: Road Atlanta, USA

When: R SUN 5:05 AM

How to follow: Sky Sport

 

Heading to the final round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Road Atlanta, Porsche is poised to clinch the manufacturer, team and driver titles.

 

The North American factory team of the Stuttgart sports car manufacturer tackles the final 10-hour race, dubbed Petit Le Mans, on 12 October holding a clear lead in all categories.

 

To win the Manufacturers’ Championship, only one of the two Porsche 911 RSR needs to finish in the points.

 

The fight for the drivers’ classification goes down to the wire between the Porsche works drivers Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) in the no. 912 car, and their colleagues in the no. 911 vehicle, Patrick Pilet (France) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain).

 

CLICK HERE for the full entry list

 

CLICK HERE for the full schedule

 

The race at Road Atlanta marks the last outing for the two Porsche 911 RSR (2017 model year) decked out in the historic design of Coca-Cola.

 

“An impressive year in the North American IMSA series comes to an end,” Bamber said.

 

“At the final round we want to ensure that as many titles as possible go to Porsche. This is the big goal. What’s more, Laurens and I have personal ambitions, of course.

 

“We want to claim the drivers’ championship. This certainly won’t be easy. I’m very much looking forward to the race.

 

“Just being able to drive for Porsche is great, but to race a Porsche 911 RSR flying the Coca-Cola colours is simply sensational. The car is beautifully finished – and it’ll certainly be fast at Road Atlanta as well.”

 

READ MORE: Swan song beckons for Ford GT

 

Words / Porsche

 

Liam

Liam Lawson

What: Euroformula Open Championship

Where: Monza, Italy

When: R1 SUN 1:15 AM | R2 MON 12:50 AM

How to follow: Live Stream

 

Red Bull Junior Team driver Liam Lawson has high hopes he’ll end his maiden season in the EuroFormula Open Championship on top.

 

Lawson will race at Monza for the second time this season in what will be his final outing in the Dallara F317.

 

The car was the basis of many Formula 3 championship around the world for nearly a decade until the FIA introduced new rules and regulations for the platform.

 

The car has been raced by the likes of Marcus Armstrong and Nick Cassidy. Brendon Hartley drove and an earlier iteration of the Dallara chassis at the beginning of his open-wheel racing career.

 

“It's really sad to be driving this car for the last time, it's such a good car,” Lawson said.

 

“I am so glad I got to do a season in this car, it's the best. I can't thank Red Bull and Motopark enough for allowing me to experience this car.

 

“It's going to be nice to not have to worry so much about tyre life which is so critical in FIA Formula 3 Championship. The Euroformula cars use a different tyre and they last a lot longer.

 

“It should be good racing at Monza, low downforce and there are a few places to pass."

 

CLICK HERE to read the full preview

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