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GT New Zealand Championship resumes at Manfeild

Racing gets back underway this weekend in the Summerset GT New Zealand Championship when cars hit the track at Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon at Feilding on Friday.

Following round one of the Championship at a very wet Taupo International Motorsport Park in November, Sam Filmore leads the Open Class in this Porsche 992, while the McLaren 570S of Brock Gilchrist leads in GT4.

For Filmore, he’s excited to get to Manfeild, a track he knows well.

“Manfeild is a fantastic track with the big banked corners and really suits the GT cars. I won my first North Island endurance series in 2016 there in a Ferrari 458 GT3 so I can’t wait to get back there and rip into it with the 992 Porsche,” says Filmore.

“Hopefully we will get some dry running and I believe there will be some really good hard close racing and a heap of fun. I can’t wait, fizzing like a shaken can of coke.”

Over in GT4, Championship leader Brock Gilchrist thinks the Manfeild track should suit his McLaren 570S.

“Manfeild should be a good car for the McLaren 570S GT4 with the three long straights. I’m sure the Giltrap Group Motorsport team will have the car dialled for the weekend so we can give it a good crack!”, says Gilchrist.

“This weekend should be a good learning curve for me. I’ll be learning to manage the tyre throughout the long hot races. Really looking forward to it and can’t wait to get out on track!

A seventeen car field from the likes or Porsche, McLaren, Mercedes AMG, BMW & Ginetta will line up across the two classes this weekend, including a number of new arrivals.

The most notable new arrivals are the two Mercedes AMG GT2 cars which make their racing debut’s in the Open Class in the hands of Paul Pedersen, having stepped out of a Porsche from last season, and Joel Giddy, who steps up from his GT4 AMG.

Paul Southam will line up in a newer model Porsche 992, while his regular team-mate Rob Steele sits out the round due to other commitments.

Alongside the new Porsche 992 of Southam, Rick Armstrong returns having clinched a win at Taupo. Also alongside the 992 Porsche’s of Luke Manson, and championship leader Sam Filmore.

Wellington teenager, Regan Scoullar is back in a 991.2, with Raana Horan also in a similar machine. Tony Austin returns in his Porsche 997, and look for youngster Clay Osborne in a Porsche 991.

The championship also welcomes back veteran racer Brian Green, who will line-up the open class in an unrestricted McLaren 570S GT4 he raced last season.

In the GT4 class, there is a pairing of Mercedes AMG GT4 cars, in the hands of father and son duo Glenn and Sam Cotterill who will share the car, with James Sax in another entry.

Two Ginetta’s return again this season, the G55 of Alan Sargeant, and the newer G56 of Steve Scoles.

Championship leader Brock Gilchrist returns in his McLaren 570 GT4, after making an impressive debut at Taupo.

The BMW M4 GT4 of Garth Piesse returns after a pleasing podium at Taupo in November.

The Championship points table currently sees Sam Filmore lead Open Class on 235.5 points, Rick Armstrong second on 231 points, with Ayrton Hodson third on 223.5

In GT4, Brock Gilchrist leads on 284.5, followed by Joel Giddy on 269.5, with Garth Piesse third on 205.

The championship will see two 30-minute races and a single 1-hour feature race held over the weekend, with racing from both days to be broadcast live on Sky Sport.

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