GWR Australia Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia powered by AWS driver Brett Hobson says getting a feel for the handling characteristics of his Mercedes-AMG GT3 will be the key to improved results in this weekend’s third round of the series at Phillip Island.
Hobson will once again join Mike Bailey in the Pro-Am class, while the other car in the GWR stable will be the Mike Sheargold/Garth Walden RAM Motorsport Am class entry.
By his own admission, Hobson is still adapting to the Mercedes after years racing a Nissan GTR GT3 car.
“In the first couple of rounds of this year’s series, my pace hasn’t been where I would have liked and that’s because I’m still not used to the Mercedes,” Hobson said.
“Compared to the Nissan, and also Mike’s Bentley that I drove at the end of last year, the way it pitches and rolls on the track is a completely different feeling and I’m still getting my head around it.
“Because GT cars rely so heavily on their aero and corner speeds to make lap time, you have to be confident in knowing where the limits of the car are, and I don’t feel like I’m quite there yet.”
Hobson said the most positive aspect of the first two rounds has been Mike’s performance in the car.
“Mike’s pace has been really competitive – he’s been just as fast as, if not faster than a lot of the Am drivers we’re battling against,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Sheargold/Walden combination sits third in the Am class standings after a consistent start to the year, but both drivers want more.
“Ultimately, we’re racing drivers and we’re here to win – we were second in the championship last year, so the goal for 2023 is to go one better,” Walden said.
“Our pace in the first two rounds hasn’t been too bad, but there have been a couple of little issues that have cost us points and realistically, we haven’t quite had the pace to fight for wins.”
“I’ve been doing my fastest laps of the weekend at the end of the last race – in one way, it’s a positive because it shows I’m always improving, but I need to find some more speed earlier in each round, especially in qualifying,” Sheargold added.
This weekend’s two one-hour races will both be shown live on Stan Sport.
GT World Challenge Round 3 Schedule
Friday, 12 May
10:45am – Practice 1 (45 min)
2:00pm – Practice 2 (45 min)
Saturday, 13 May
9:45am – Qualifying 1 (15 min)
10:15am – Qualifying 2 (15 min)
12:55pm – Race 1 (60 min)
Sunday, 14 May
12:50pm – Race 2 (60 min)