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GT World Challenge Europe Testdays - Circuit Paul Ricard - France

7th - 8th March 2023

Event report and photos by Raymond Bonnello

The 2023 season begins, for me, on the Paul Ricard circuit, on March 7 and 8, with the traditional test days of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS.

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About fifty cars were given an appointment on the Var track.

News such as the Ferrari 296 GT3, which will co-exist with its younger sister the 488 GT3, as well as the latest generation of the Porsche 911 GT3-R, evolutions such as the Lamborghini Huracán EVO2 or the upgraded McLaren 720S Evo as well as a returning Honda NSX Evo 22.

The BMWs remain in their 2022 configuration.

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For the brands from Ingolstadt and Affalterbach no noveltiesfor this season, but as you will see this did not prevent them from finishing at the top of the timesheets.

During these two days of confrontation 14 hours of track were allocated to the teams to test the equipment, the women and men who will participate in this new campaign that will start for endurance and sprint respectively in Monza and Brands Hatch.

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I'm not going to give you a minute-by-minute report, it was not a race, but a summary of the results for each session.

As you can see below some teams have rolled several cars with the same race number, it’s up to you to play the game of septs errors.

Session 1, Tuesday morning.

48 cars took the 5771 m runway for this start-up.

In 1:53.294 the Comtoyou Racing Audi R8 LMS evo II GT3 #11 set the best time of the morning ahead of another Audi R8 LMS evo II GT3 the #25 of the Sainteloc Junior Team and the BMW M4 GT3 #998 of Rowe Racing.

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Session 2, Tuesday afternoon.

For this session, the top of the time sheet is once again the property of an Audi R8 LMS evo II GT3 the #40 of the Tresor Attempto Racing, it is ahead of the Mercedes-AMG GT3 #88 of the AKKODIS ASP Team, the third time is up, as in the morning at the Rowe Racing BMW M4 GT3 #998.

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Session 3, Wednesday morning.

As the day before started at 09:00, we find with a time of 1:52.701, which will remain the top time of these two days, the Mercedes-AMG GT3 #88 of AKKODIS ASP Team in front of another Mercedes-AMG GT3 the #57 of the Winward Racing that precedes the Boutsen VDS Audi R8 LMS evo II GT3 #17. The first seven of this session are either Mercedes (1, 2, 4 and 7) or Audi (3, 5, 6).

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4th and last session of these test days in the afternoon of this Wednesday.

This final session went to the #777 Mercedes-AMG GT3 of AMG Team AlManar, ahead of the #88 Mercedes-AMG GT3 of AKKODIS ASP Team and the #888 Audi R8 LMS evo II GT3 of CSA Racing.

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As said above we leave these two days with a draw: Ingolstadt 2 / Affalterbach 2

These test days were also the opportunity for the formalization of the crews for certain teams and especially for SRO to disclose the season entry lists with 40 registered in the Fanatec GT Sprint Cup and 56 entries for the Fanatec GT Endurance Cup.

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I hope to 'see you again' during this season, I have several trips planned, a return to Paul Ricard for the 1000 Km in June, Valencia and Barcelona in September.

Based on Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS press report

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