All change in China!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

With the new 2019 China GT Championship season just around the corner, we find that its all change within the Championship as the primary Aston Martin Racing team enters into its third year of racing within the GT4 class

New Year - new cars - new drivers - new team name and indeed new racing rules are just some of the changes that we can expect to see as the 2019 season looks to kick off at the Asia GT Festival from the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia in little under three weeks time.

Firstly, China Equity AMR have changed their team name over the winter to become Asia Sonic Racing to reflect that of the teams primary backers title in Beijing Sonic Events Management that has appeared on the teams title banner from the start. Then, it has been confirmed that the team will be running two 2019 specification cars at the opening event of the season in Malaysia (as long as they arrive from the factory in time) - the first time the Championship has ran outside of mainland China.

Next up come the drivers - only two have been confirmed publicly so far and thats Yves Volte - the young German racer who now resides in China and who raced with the team so competitively at the final to races last year in Shanghai. He - as only announced today will share his car with returning team driver David Pun - but not for Malaysia as prior engagements will keep Pun away.

A replacement for Pun at the Asia GT Festival together with the driver line up for the second car remained unconfirmed although sources from the AMR suggest that all other drivers recruited into the team for the 2019 season will be regionally based pay drivers so unfortunately we will not be seeing the likes of reigning China GT GT4 Champion Jack Mitchell nor AMR factory driver Ross Gunn make a return to the Championship.

Next up we see a new name come forward to compete with an AMR platform for the first time and that will be in the form of King Dcar Racing - a previous GT3 championship winning team who will enter the Festival with a mix of Mercedes AMG GT3's and AMR Vantage GT4's (we believe these cars to be the older 2016 specification) amongst their four confirmed entries.

In terms of rule changes, now both Pro and Am drivers will be required to each set a time in Qualifying - times that will be used to determine their grid starting positions and the driver who starts race 2 must be different to that who starts race 1. That sequence must also be determined in advance to the event by the team. Remaining changes evolve around points awarded as well as the introduction of a new Manufacturers Championship.

The Asia GT Festival starts the season over the weekend of the 16/17th March with five further double header race weekends between then and mid October with a further invitational race possible around the street circuit of Wuhan in November.

Photo credits - Asia Sonic Racing

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