GT Masters driver announcements en masse

The ADAC GT Masters teams are slowly starting to announce their 2020 drivers.

With two months left until the season opener, we already have a lot of names set in stone.

The defending champions from HCB-Rutronik Racing Audi will return with their championship pair Patric Niederhauser and Kelvin van der Linde. Both drivers in the team’s second car has also been renewed, with Dennis Marschall and Carrie Schreiner getting their second season for the team. They finished the season off with a podium at the Hockenheim weekend. Their goal is to race more permanently in the top 1o throughout the 2020 season.

Grasser Racing Team will enter three green Lamborghini cars once again. The first car will be driven by Tim Zimmermann and Steijn Schothorst, who are both new to the ADAC GT Masters. Zimmermann has most recently run in Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland, but  he was part of ADAC Formel 4 and ADAC TCR Germany prior to that. Schothorst has primarily been racing GT3 cars for the past couple of seasons, mixed up with a bit of LMP3. Prior to the sportscar world dragging him in, he made it all the way up to GP3 on the single-seater part of the sport.

Niels Langrange is confirmed in the second car for the team, while the third car has no drivers named at all. Belgian Langrange has a couple of seasons of Lambo knowledge, but the ADAC GT Masters is the by far the highest ranked championship that he has participated in until now. So that makes the Austrian team, with the Italian car, having a German, a Belgian and a Dutchman in the cars.

KÜS Team75 Bernhard already announced back in December that Klaus Bachler and Simona De Silvestro would share one of the team’s Porsche 911 GT3 R, and now they have announced Jannes Fittje and Mike David Ortmann in the second car. Both drivers have a background in the ADAC Formula 4, but while Ortmann left after the 2016 season, Fittje decided to take a few years more in single seaters, and didn’t get a roof over his head until 2019 in the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. Ortmann has raced an Audi at BWT Mücke Motorsport until now, so he’ll have to get used to the different Porsche driving style.

BWT Mücke Motorsport is one of teams once again showing up in the ADAC GT Masters. They will, however, only run two cars this season, opposite to three in the previous years, but they will stick to Audi R8 LMS cars. Mike Beckhusen and Igor Walilko will share car #25. They are both experienced GT drivers, but it will be their first season in the ADAC GT Masters and in a GT3 car. They have previous raced in GT4 and various Porsche series. Stefan Mücke will share car #26 with Ricardo Feller, with both drivers having racing experience with the team, and from being on top of the poidum in the series – but not as a pairing until now. It will once again be two pink cars with BWT sponsoring, while the orange Autoteile24 car is no longer part of the team.

KÜS Team75 Bernhard Porsche #17, Orange by GRT Grasser Lamborghini #19, Montaplast by Land-Motorsport Audi #29 HCB-Rutronik Racing #31 & #8 Audi etc
Photo: Gruppe C Photography

Precote Herberth Motorsport Porsche won the championship back in 2018, but didn’t manage to defend it in 2019. Team owner Robert Renauer has chosen to get a new teammate for the 2020 season, with Sven Müller jumping into car #99. Their driver from last year, Mathieu Jaminet, has been upgraded to Porsche works driver, and will be on other duties this year.

Constantin Schöll is a new name in the ADAC GT Masters. The Austrian has signed a contrack with T3 Motorsport. Schöll raced in the ADAC GT4 Germany last year, but he has done a bit of LMP3 racing too. His teammate has not yet been announced.

Toksport WRT Mercedes put a toe in the water during the 2019 season, showing impressive speed during the two weekends they raced. Maro Engel and Luca Stolz will race the silver Mercedes-Benz GT3 Evo, which gets its debut in the ADAC GT Masters. They raced the normal GT3 version last year, but Mercedes hast sent out an Evo package over the winter, so they will of course drive that one. Engel and Stolz have raced Mercedes cars for a lot of years, and have been part of the development of the new car – so it’s probably hard to find a better combination regarding drivers with the Mercedes star on their racing suit.

Another team who will run the new Mercedes-Benz GT3 Evo is Team Zakspeed. Daniel Keilwitz and Jimmy Eriksson are back for the team, who will once again run two cars. The drivers in the second car haven’t been announced just yet. Keilwitz has plenty of ADAC GT Masters experience, with 136 race starts, including 22 race wins. Eriksson can’t brag about those kind of statistics, but the pairing did finish 2019 off with three top-5 results, in the last four races of the year.

Everything is just like it use to be at Team ISR. The Czech Republic team will race an Audi R8 LMS, car number 33, and have Frank Stippler and Filip Salaquarda behind the wheel. The team grabbed a single win in 2018, but barely missed out on a podium finish in 2019, with fourth being the best result. While Filip is son of team owner Igor, Frank has been a works driver for Audi for many years.

Other than these teams, we have Audi Sport Team WRT confirming two entries, but they haven’t named any drivers yet.

The series haven’t released any official entry list for 2020 yet, with only 28 of 34 teams officially appointed yet. the remaining six spots will be split to entrants, to bring as many brands into the series, combined with experience of th teams. The first 28 teams were the 28 fastest teams to put in their entry, in that specific order. So if any “important” teams didn’t make it in time, they will be amongst the final six.

The ADAC GT Masters 2020 starts on 24-26 April at Oschersleben near Magdeburg.

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