> New R8 LMS Evo II GT3’s Asia debut confirmed with Stuvik, Shahin, Thong and Pun
Audi Sport Asia has confirmed that two new X Works-run R8 LMS Evo II GT3s will contest this year’s Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS campaign, which begins at Sepang on May 20-22.
The manufacturer’s official regional drivers Sandy Stuvik and Shaun Thong lead two Pro-Am crews also featuring Yasser Shahin and David Pun. All four drivers are scheduled to contest the continental series’ six rounds, which also comprise four events in Japan and Indonesia’s season finale at the new Mandalika circuit.
Stuvik and Thong can both draw on their prior Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS experience from 2017 and ‘18. The latter was GT3 Silver class champion and an outright race winner alongside his now X Works team boss Marchy Lee in the series’ inaugural season, while Stuvik finished sixth overall that same year. He’s since clinched two Thai Super Series titles with Audi.
Thong’s co-driver, David Pun, embarks on his first full-season Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS programme after sampling the championship in its final pre-pandemic campaign of 2019. He was also runner-up in the China-based GT Super Sprint Challenge’s GT3 class last season.
Meanwhile, Australian Yasser Shahin – who partners Stuvik – is one of the region’s most accomplished Am competitors whose standout successes with Audi include winning the final Audi Sport R8 LMS Cup title in 2019. And last season he clinched his native Fanatec GT World Challenge Powered by AWS Pro-Am crown alongside Audi Sport driver Christopher Mies.
“We are very excited to be back at Asia’s leading GT championship, with two very competitive Pro-Am entries,” said Alexander Blackie, Manager of Audi Sport customer racing Asia. “With Audi Sport Asia drivers Sandy Stuvik and Shaun Thong partnering with two of the quickest Am drivers in the region in Yasser Shahin and David Pun, we have two well-balanced line-ups for the Asia debut of the Audi R8 LMS Evo II.”
The four drivers join an X Works squad that made its only previous Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS appearance in 2019 at Fuji – an entry that also featured Thong. However, this year will be the team’s first full-season assault.