The Australian GT Championship will welcome a new Audi R8 entry to the grid at the Castrol Edge Townsville 400 next week.
Former Carrera Cup Australia driver Ash Samadi has secured a brand new R8 GT3 which will be prepared by Audi Customer Racing Australia for the remainder of the season.
Samadi has been a regular in the Australian GT Championship but has elected to switch from his Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 to Audi’s new 2016 specification machinery.
The 46-year-old tested the car for the first time at Winton on Tuesday ahead of next week’s visit to Townsville.
“There were two reasons for the change,” said Samadi.
“The first was I’d heard good things about Audi Sport Customer Racing, and from what I’ve experienced so far I haven’t been disappointed.
“Secondly, global demand for the Mercedes AMG GT3 is so high that it would have delayed the arrival of a new car.
“I didn’t think I could be surprised after stepping out of the amazing Mercedes AMG SLS GT3, but the Audi was just incredible straight out of the box.
“It was only a shakedown and it will be different when we go racing but it was very exciting.“
Samadi’s new acquisition will see Audi Customer Racing Australia prepare six cars at Townsville, including five new specification R8 GT3s.
Townsville’s Reid Park Circuit will host two 60 minute races with the first scheduled for July 9 at 1140 local time.