Habul eager to start title defence at Bathurst 12 Hour

Kenny Habul after winning last year’s Intercontinental GT Challenge Bronze Drivers crown

Expatriate Australian Kenny Habul will kick off the defence of his Intercontinental GT Challenge drivers title at next weekend’s Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.

The US-based driver clinched the Intercontinental GT Challenge Bronze Drivers title at Laguna Seca in California in October and has been itching to get back in a car ever since.

Habul will share his SunEnergy1 Mercedes-AMG Pro-Am entry with his long-time French team-mate Tristan Vautier and 2013 Bathurst 12 Hour winner Thomas Jaeger.

The car will be prepared by Scott Taylor Motorsport, which is also working with Triple Eight Race Engineering on a sister car for Jamie Whincup, Craig Lowndes, and Shane van Gisbergen.

STM will also be preparing a Mercedes-AMG in the Pro-Am class for David Reynolds, Luke Youlden, and Yasser Shahin, in collaboration with Erebus Motorsport.

Habul will arrive in Australia with plenty of enthusiasm after finishing second outright in last year’s Bathurst event with Vautier, Whincup, and Raffaele Marciello.

“Last year was pretty amazing really. We ticked a lot of boxes,” said Habul.

“To finish on the podium at the Bathurst 12 Hour last year was probably the highlight of my career and then to go on and win the Intercontinental GT Challenge drivers title was the icing on the cake.

“Thomas and Tristan are both terrific drivers and have a lot of laps under their belts at Bathurst and that is always a big asset to have going into a 12 Hour.”

Last year’s Bathurst podium and the Intercontinental GT Challenge title are the biggest achievements in Habul’s career, which started in Formula Ford in Australia in the late 1990s and was reignited with NASCAR and sportscar events in the US after several years devoted to building his successful solar energy business.

“It was a pretty amazing feeling to be standing on the podium at Mt Panorama last year. It was boyhood dream stuff,” said Habul.

“It’s a feeling I definitely would like to experience again.

“A good result at Bathurst would provide a foundation on which we could hopefully build an Intercontinental GT Challenge drivers title defence over the next 10 months or so.

“It is a privilege to be a part of the Mercedes-AMG family and to enjoy the support they provide.

“I don’t have the time to run my own car full-time, but, Mercedes-AMG do a terrific job through their customer network to hook me up with professional teams, like Scott Taylor Motorsport, to help up get the job done.”

Habul’s Intercontinental GT Challenge season continues after Bathurst with the California 8 Hours at Laguna Seca in March, followed by the Total 24 Hours of Spa, Suzuka 10 Hour, and culminating in the Kyalami 9 Hour in South Africa in November.

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