GT Open Pays 1st Visit to Legendary Spa

• Fight between Ferrari and Porsche expected to reach new height in the Ardennes• Marcel Fässler and Giacomo Ricci: Two young guns for Trottet and Villois• British IN2 Racing’s Lambo joins the party

The third round of the 2008 season, which will take place 31st May and 1st June, marks an important moment in the history of the International GT Open, as the series will make its first visit to one of the most beautiful, demanding and history-rich circuits of the world: Spa-Francorchamps.

Anxiety and expectations are high, at the eve of this first visit to the “cathedral” of motorsports in the Belgian Ardennes, which will be the tenth circuit visited by the GT Open since its creation in 2006. The length (7,003 km) and the difficulties of this fast and “natural” track designed in the hills, and the unpredictability of Belgian weather, all add to the excitement.

The International GT Open will be the main feature of the Spa Euro Race, one of the most important and traditional meetings in Spa’s calendar, which this year will also include rounds of the Spanish F.3 Championship FIAT, the Euroseries 3000, the Formula Renault 2.0 Italia, the Britcar, and other series.

All the GT Open regular participants present and the entry list will be published officially on Tuesday 27 May. The few changes already confirmed affect mainly some driver line-ups.

With Pompidou and Alexander busy with the qualifying session in Le Mans, Swiss Trottet Racing is entrusting its Ferrari F430 GTC to a new pair, led by Marcel Fässler. The young Swiss star, a prominent GT, sportscar and DTM driver, will make its debut in the series, alongside country-fellow Henri Moser.

With the support ofഊSimilarly, GP2 regular Giacomo Ricci will be back as the team-mate of Max Wiser inone of the Aston Martins DBRS9 of the Villois Racing. The young Italian already drove this car in the season-opening Vallelunga GT Open, where he finished second in both races.

Another confirmed novelty is the debut of a Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 from England, entered by the IN2 Racing for Paul Hogart and James Pickford.

With no doubt, the Spa GT Open will be an important moment in the championship. Scuderia Playteam SaraFree, which currently has its two cars (Montermini-Maceratesi and Gião-Couceiro) in the two first positions of the standings will want to confirm their leadership, but other front-running Ferrari teams, such as Advanced Engineering, Edil Cris, RSV and GPC are eager to shine, and the Porsches of Autorlando Sport (with reigning champion Richard Lietz and former F.1 driver Alex Caffi) and Drivex will certainly have something to say for victory, in a track that suits them well, especially if typical Belgian weather invites itself to the party.

In GTS, the fight between the Lamborghinis Gallardo of Racing Box (so far winners of 3 out of 4 races), the Twenty-two Corvette and the Villois Aston Martins is expected to live another lively chapter.

All the action in Spa can be followed throughout Europe on the Eurosport network, and live in Italy (Nuvolari TV), Spain (Canal +) and Portugal (Sport TV). Pro-Am race on Saturday 31 st May will be at 16:35 CET and GT Open race on Sunday at 13:50 CET.

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