German ace to race SLS AMG GT3 at Gold Coast
FIA GT1 World Team Champion Thomas Jäger will race in one of Erebus Motorsport’s SLS AMG GT3s in the penultimate round of the Australian GT Championship protected by Sargent Security at the Armor All Gold Coast 600.
A former DTM racer for Mercedes-Benz, Jäger has won Porsche Carrera Cup and MINI Challenge Championships and is regarded as one of the most experienced SLS AMG GT3 drivers in the world.
Jäger had the honour of taking the Gullwing to its very first victory on the Nordschleife and then in January won the car’s first-ever 24 Hour race in Dubai.
The Australian GT event on the Gold Coast will be his first racing visit to Australia.
“I have watched many of the old IndyCar races from Surfers and I imagine that taking the SLS AMG GT3 for its first ride around the track is going to be a huge challenge,” said Jäger.
“The Australian GT Championship has been so tight all the way through 2012, and I can’t see Surfers Paradise being any different to that.”
Jäger is the second of three AMG factory drivers that are being loaned to the Erebus Motorsport team for the last three rounds of the Australian GT Championship in 2012.
He admitted that he is under a bit of pressure after the performance of Maro Engel at Phillip Island who took victory in the #62 SLS.
“Maro’s performance at the last round in the SLS AMG GT3 has really put the pressure on me to maintain that run. Erebus Motorsport’s results this season speak for themselves and I’ll be doing my best to ensure that continues,” he said.
Team-mate Hackett enters the twin 30-minute races at the Gold Coast 14 points ahead of Klark Quinn in the championship. His aim is to at least maintain that advantage heading into the final round at the Sydney Telstra 500 in December. He admitted though that the nature of the Surfers Paradise street track may be more suited to other cars.
“We increased our championship lead at Phillip Island, but I think Surfers Paradise is going to be a tougher assignment,” said Hackett.
“If we can maintain our position and head into the final round of the championship in Sydney in the lead, it will be exactly what we’re looking for.
“With Thomas’ experience as a foundation AMG Customer Sports driver, I think Erebus Motorsport as a team can take an even bigger progression in our personal development with the SLS AMG GT3 on the Gold Coast. The steps forward we made at Phillip Island with Maro on board were huge.”
Hackett paid tribute to Jäger and his development of the AMG Customer Sports program.
“Thomas is renowned as one of the leading GT3 pilots in the world and to have him as part of Erebus Motorsport will be awesome – especially on the Gold Coast, which is a completely blank sheet for all of the Australian GT Championship teams.”
The penultimate round of the Australian GT Championship will support the Armor All Gold Coast 600 in Surfers Paradise from October 19-21.