Max Papis keen for Bathurst 12 Hour start

Max Papis

Max Papis

Former Champ Car star Max Papis has outlined his desire to join the grid for the 2012 Armor All Bathurst 12 Hour.

Papis visited Bathurst in October for the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, where he was a guest of Toll Holden Racing Team driver James Courtney.

The 42-year-old Italian has had a diverse racing career that has included seven Grand Prix starts with Footwork in 1995, prior to an eight-year Champ Car career that netted three wins with Team Rahal.

Papis has also raced extensively in sportscar, GT and NASCAR competition, and says racing in the Bathurst 12 Hour would be a great way to experience the Mount Panorama circuit.

“It would be a dream of mine to be able to participate in the Bathurst 12 Hour,” said Papis.

“I heard from my friend, Paul Morris, that it was something that I couldn’t miss in terms of something to add to my CV.

“After visiting the Bathurst 1000 this year with my friend James Courtney I felt that after I saw the track it was something I really wanted to do.

“I have run 22, 24-hour races and had the opportunity and the luxury to win Daytona twice and win Sebring and other endurance races.

“It would be a great, great feeling (to race at Bathurst) and an opportunity for me to be part of the 12 Hour.”

The introduction of GT3 cars to the Bathurst 12 Hour saw an international presence at the race this year, with Chinese driver Darryl O’Young teaming with Germans Marc Basseng and Christopher Mies to win the race in a Team Joest Audi R8.

The international assault on the 2012 race will again be led by Audi, while a two-car Mercedes effort from fellow German outfit Black Falcon is also likely to contend.

The 2012 Armor All Bathurst 12 Hour is set to take place on February 26.

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