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AUSSIE ASSAULT ON CHINA GT BEGINS THIS WEEK IN BEIJING

Glen Wood makes his GT4 debut in the KTM X-Bow in China - Photo: Supplied

Glen Wood makes his GT4 debut in the KTM X-Bow in China – Photo: Supplied

There will be an Australian flavour to the opening round of the 2017 China GT Championship when it begins this week at Goldenport Motor Park in Beijing, with M-Motorsport’s Glen Wood making his GT4 debut in the mighty KTM X-Bow GT4 in what is arguably the fastest growing championship in the world.

Campaigned across four events in 2016, the China GT Championship has grown to six events across China for their second season, and Wood is slated to be a part of the Xtreme Motorsport team for a full campaign alongside a yet to be confirmed team-mate.

“I’m overjoyed to be heading back overseas to compete, and honoured that thanks to Justin McMillan [M-Motorsport team-boss] and Reiter Engineering I’ve been handed this fantastic opportunity,” Wood admitted.

“China is the fastest growing automotive market in the world, and their GT competition is growing too at an incredible rate, with suggestions that the GT field at Goldenport could top 40 cars.”

McMillan will join Wood in Beijing as an observer, in part with his role as the Reiter Engineering agent for Asia-Pacific, the part-time GT driver looking to China as an opportunity to expand M-Motorsport and provide opportunities for Australian drivers to get involved in competition in the northern hemisphere.

“I’d love to be able to join Glen and compete – and that’s a possibility down the track, but I also want to be able to stand back and watch how things unfold and talk with teams,” McMillan explained.

“We know the KTM will be quick – we showed that at the Bathurst 12-Hour and the first round of the Australian GT trophy class at Sandown with victory – but it will be good to see how it competes against the likes of McLaren, Aston Martin and Porsche in China.

“On that note, we have a second KTM for the next Trophy round at Winton next month, so anyone that’s interested can contact me directly via justin@mmotorsport.com.au”

For Wood, the Interlloy/Wilson Storage driver is looking forward to the Goldenport Circuit having poured over the internet searching for onboard videos and data over the last few days.

“It’s quite a short circuit at just over 3-kilometres, so I think it could really suit the KTM. It doesn’t appear to be a big aero circuit and there aren’t any long straights, so it will probably suit us quite well. It’s a great opportunity and I’m really looking forward to it, as well as the two test days prior to the Friday/Saturday race format which will see two one-hour compulsory pit stop races, much like what we do in Australian GT.”

The event gets underway on Wednesday, 10 May with a 60-minute free practice session, ahead of a second on Thursday, with a one-hour qualifying session scheduled for the afternoon. Friday will see the first 60-minute race at 10:40am (CST) ahead of the second race of the season on Saturday at 1:30pm. Both races and qualifying will be live-streamed, check www.chinagt.net for details

2017 China GT/GT Asia Series

Rnd#1/#2, 12-13 May – Beijing Audi Goldenport Motor Park (China)
Rnd#3/#4, 7-8 July – Ordos International Circuit (China)
Rnd#5/#6, 29-30 July – Zhuhai International Circuit (China)
Rnd#7/#8, 9-10 September – Shanghai International Circuit (China)
Rnd#9/#10, 4-5 October – Chengdu International Circuit (China)
Rnd#11/#12, 19-22 October – Zhejiang International Circuit (China)