POLL: Who will win the Bathurst 12 Hour?

Gordon Lomas

Monday 30th January, 2017 - 1:35pm

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As the stars and cars converge on Mount Panorama for the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour, the most loaded GT3 field ever seen in Australia has promised to dish up an epic race.

The Class A ranks have grown to 34 GT3 machines in a combination of all-pro, pro-am and amateur line-ups which will tackle the once-around-the-clock enduro.

It is a mouth-watering mix which includes entries from Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, BMW, Ferrari, Lamborghini, McLaren, Mercedes, Nissan and Porsche.

Some of the most supreme sportscar drivers from around the world will combine with a decent sprinkling of highly decorated Supercars drivers.

Speedcafe.com puts the ruler through what we consider the most formidable combinations.

Bentley will see former Audi LMP1 driver Oliver Jarvis, ex Le Mans 24 Hour winner Guy Smith and Steven Kane in the #7 Continental GT3 in what appears to be the strongest of the two M-Sport-run entries.

The Jamec Pem Audis will see GT stars Christopher Mies and Christopher Haase combine with triple Bathurst 1000 winner Garth Tander in what looks to be the pick of the R8 LMS runners.

Ferrari pits the exciting combination of Craig Lowndes, Toni Vilander and GT debutant Jamie Whincup together in the Maranello Motorsport 488 GT3.

Of the twin Nissan factory attack, the #23 GT-R crewed by Michael Caruso, Alex Buncombe and 2015 winners Katsumasa Chiyo and Florian Strauss go in with excellent credentials.

With full factory support, the Scott Taylor Mercedes-Benz AMG GT is among the highly fancied entries with the cracking line-up of Shane van Gisbergen, Maro Engel and Craig Baird in an outfit which will be run by HTP.

The STM entry is further bolstered by the inclusion of former Tekno Autosports’ Dr Geoff Slater who will occupy an engineering/management role.

BMW Team SRM has strong pro-class line-ups with team leader Steven Richards, Mark Winterbottom and Marco Wittmann combining in the #7 M6 while ex-F1 driver Timo Glock will partner veterans Mark Skaife, Russell Ingall and Tony Longhurst in another Bavarian coupe.

With the defection of van Gisbergen to Mercedes, Tekno has opted to combine 2016 winner Alvaro Parente with Rob Bell and Come Ledogar in what is a rock solid trio as the #1 McLaren 650S attempts to defend its title.

Walkinshaw Racing cuts its Bathurst 12 Hour teeth by fielding the factory Porsche 911 GT3 R with the imposing crew of 2015 Le Mans 24 Hour winner Earl Bamber, ex-Audi dynamo Laurens Vanthoor and Kevin Estre.

Finding a winner in arguably the most decorated GT3 field assembled anywhere in the world is tantamount to claiming first division in Gold Lotto on successive weekends.

Who will win the Bathurst 12 Hour?

Vote on this weeks’ poll below.

Pirtek Poll