THE organisers of the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour have outdone themselves again, assembling perhaps the most well-credentialed grid ever to grace Mount Panorama.
A 53-car field was unveiled on Tuesday, spearheaded by 13 ‘Pro’ class entries and a further 12 ‘Pro-Am’ entries, packed with a wealth of driving talent that it’s hard to know exactly where to start.
Among the grid’s combined achievements are three FIA world championship titles and as many Le Mans 24 Hours wins; 12 Supercars championships and over 400 race victories; 36 Bathurst endurance race wins; 220 Formula 1 race starts; and 32 wins across the revered 24 Hour GT races at Spa-Francorchamps and the Nurburgring.
Reigning winners Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes are back but with different teams and in different cars, trading their Ferrari for a Mercedes and a McLaren respectively.
Shane van Gisbergen and Scott McLaughlin, the two fastest drivers around Mount Panorama in a GT car and a Supercar, are also McLaren mounted, the quartet leading a contingent of 11 full-time Supercars drivers to be suiting up for the once-around-the-clock enduro.
Chasing back-to-back Mount Panorama wins are reigning Bathurst 1000 champs David Reynolds and Luke Youlden, while Chaz Mostert would become the first driver to win all three major Bathurst enduros (1000, 12 Hour, 6 Hour) should his Schnitzer Team BMW M6 cross the line first on February 4.
The overseas contingent is just as formidable, with Audi, Mercedes, McLaren, Porsche and Bentley bringing the best of their factory stars to Australia for the race.
Tickets remain available for the event, with race day General Admission tickets priced from just $46, including free access to the paddock area.