A working list of entries for the upcoming opening round of the North Island Endurance Series at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park has been unveiled, showing a combined entry list of 40 cars across the two races.
Twenty six cars have been entered in the one-hour race, while 14 cars have been entered in the three-hour race.
VelocityNews understands that around 10 other entries are expected to come before the event kicks off on September 18–19, with various teams and drivers awaiting news of when Auckland will move out of Alert Level 3 before entering the event.
The current three-hour grid is led by three GT3 entries. Former champions Glenn Smith and John de Veth are set to return in their McLaren 650S. Andrew Fawcett and Sam Fillmore will campaign an Audi R8 LMS. And defending D1NZ champion Darren Kelly will make his circuit racing debut with Aston Martin factory driver Alex Riberas in a current Aston Martin Vantage AMR.
Other notable entries include the GT4 Ford Mustang GT350 of Rick and Deon Cooper, and the Hyundai i30 N TCR of Gene Rollinson and Craig Innes. Geoff and Martin Short will form a father-son combination in a Porsche 911.
Two interesting Audis — a VLN-spec TT and a home-built V8-powered A5 GT — will be driven by the respective pairings of Shane Helms/Pavlos van Aalst and Matt Dovey/Jono Lester.
Lester is one of a handful of drivers performing double duty on the weekend. It’s understood that he is one of two drivers racing in ex Thailand Series Howe GT Transam’s in the one-hour race, with another to be confirmed.
Expected front-runners in the one-hour race include the ex–NZ SuperTourers of Tim Edgell (Holden Commodore) and John Midgley (Ford Falcon), as well as the ex-NZV8 TLX Holdens of Lance Hughes and Paul Verryt. There’s also a raft of Porsche 911 GT3s and cup cars, with Callum Hedge (991), Fillmore (991), and Paul Kelly (997), the likely ones to watch.
Lochlainn Fitzgerald-Symes ensures that there’s a TCR machine in each race, with his Honda Civic Type R entered in the one-hour event. At the opposite end of the spectrum is Andy Duffin’s flame-throwing Mazda RX-7.
North Island Endurance Series provisional entry list — one hour
No. 4 Shaun Varney — BMW E46 318 V8
No. 5 Geoff Short/Martin Short — Porsche 997 Gen 2
No. 8 Tim Edgell — Holden Commodore VE V8ST
No. 17 Callum Hedge — Porsche 991 Gen1
No. 19 John Midgley — Ford Falcon FG V8ST
No. 23 Greg Kroef — Ford Falcon BF V8Ute
No. 23 Sam Fillmore — Porsche 991 Gen 2
No. 26 Lochlainn Fitzgerald-Symes — Honda Civic FK2 TCR
No. 42 Steff Chambers — Porsche 996
No. 54 Darryl Clarke — Ford Falcon BF TL
No. 61 Charles Rollo — Toyota Levin AE86
No. 62 Brendan Sole — Chevrolet Corvette C5
No. 71 Andy Duffin — Mazda RX7
No. 81 Sturan Robertson — Porsche 997 Gen 1
No. 84 Lance Hughes — Holden Commodore VE TLX
No. 88 Wade Stevenson — Subaru Legacy
No. 89 Jono Lester — Ford Mustang Transam
No. 90 Paul Kelly — Porsche 997 Gen 2
No. 99 Peter Beguley — BMW M3 E92 V8
No. 99 BreW Rudd — Holden Commodore VE Ute
No. 123 Paul Verryt — Holden Commodore VE TLX
No.132 Deon Cooper/Rick Cooper — Ssangyong Actyon Super Ute
No. 142 Graeme Fraser — BMW M3 E36
No. 302 Barry Kirk Burnnand — Ford Mustang
No. 777 Bob Sievwright — BMW M3 E46
No. TBA Kris Bostick — Porsche 991 Gen 1
North Island Endurance Series provisional entry list — three hour
No. 1 Glenn Smith/John de Veth — McLaren 650 S GT3
No. 5 Geoff Short/Martin Short — Porsche 997 Gen
No. 5 Gene Rollinson/Craig Innes — Hyundai i30N TCR
No. 10 Andrew Fawcett/Sam Fillmore — Audi R8 LMS GT3*
No. 17 David Dovey/Todd Murphy — Hyundai i45 V8ST
No. 20 Tony Head/Seton Head — Toyota Altezza
No. 23 Alex Riberas/Darren Kelly — Aston MarGn AMR GT3*
No. 24 Rob Williams/Phil Blythe —Porsche 997 Gen 2
No. 46 Robert Drum/Jeff Drum — Subaru BRZ
No. 77 Shane Helms/Pavlos van Aalst — Audi TT VLN
No. 78 Shane Holland/Thomas Sutton — Mazda RX-7
No. 80 Matt Dovey/Jono Lester — Audi A5 GT V8
No. 151 Rick Cooper/Deon Cooper — Ford Mustang GT4
No. 635 Glen Chappell/TBA — BMW 150D E87