> Top Japanese teams and drivers swell Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS ranks
> Provisional entry list: Fuji
After an action packed season opener in Thailand, Fanatec GT World Challenge Asia Powered by AWS’s attention now switches to Fuji International Speedway where a record-breaking provisional 40-car entry will assemble for the first of this year’s Fanatec Japan Cup events on June 16-18.
The overall number is on course to comfortably beat the championship’s previous best of 34, which also raced at Fuji in 2017, while 36 GT3s is believed to be a joint record for Japan. The same number contested 2019’s Suzuka 10 Hours.
20 of the 25 cars that appeared at Rounds 1 and 2 will be joined by the same number of local entries, while 20 are eligible for Fanatec Japan Cup points.
Collectively, the list comprises 13 manufacturers, 12 of which compete in the GT3 class – a level of variety currently unmatched in GT racing worldwide.
AAS Motorsport by Absolute Racing’s Vutthikorn Inthraphuvasak and Alessio Picariello top the early drivers’ standings thanks to their two podiums at Chang International Circuit where Prince Abu Bakar Ibrahim and Luca Stolz (Triple Eight JMR), and Anthony Liu and Fabian Schiller (Craft-Bamboo Racing) scored a win apiece. But they, as well as Fanatec GT Asia’s other full-season crews, face a tough task at Fuji where Fanatec Japan Cup entries old and new make their first appearances of the season.
Chief among them are reigning overall champions Takeshi Kimura and Kei Cozzolino who debut CarGuy Racing’s brand-new Ferrari 296 GT3. Race winners Satoshi Hoshino and Tomonobu Fujii (D’station Racing) are joined by fellow Fanatec Japan Cup returnees Plus with BMW Team Studie, The Spirit of FFF Racing, ABSSA Motorsport, LMcorsa and Comet Racing, as well as a host of new additions making their series debuts.
The GT3 entry list comprises Aston Martin, Audi, BMW, Corvette, Ferrari, Honda Lamborghini, Lexus, McLaren, Mercedes-AMG, Nissan and Porsche – 12 of the 13 manufacturers with currently homologated models.
Japan’s vibrant GT4 market also sees the class expand to four cars at Fuji where BMW, Porsche and Toyota compete.
All four Fanatec Japan Cup events, which also include races at Suzuka, Motegi and Okayama, are live on J Sports across Japan, as well as on SRO’s GT World YouTube channel.