BMW Team SRM has expanded its 2016 programme to include every round of the Australian GT Championship.
Initially, the brand new factory-backed team was planning on a limited campaign that included a one-off outing at the Australian Grand Prix, followed by the four ‘endurance’ rounds later in the season.
However, a slightly earlier than expected arrival of the first brand new M6 GT3 in Australia has led to the team deciding to expand its program to include all six ‘sprint’ rounds, as well as the four 101-lap endurance races.
That means the M6’s competitive debut will be at next month’s Clipsal 500.
“I think we all got pretty excited when we found out we were allocated a car for January, and that moved the goal posts for us,” said BMW Team SRM owner and driver Steve Richards.
“It gave us the opportunity to work towards a full program for 2016, and it was an opportunity we didn’t want to miss. So we all put our heads together and made it happen.
“The extra races will be hugely beneficial when it comes to learning the idiosyncrasies of the new car, as well as how to best utilise the fantastic technical support we will have from Germany.
“The earlier we sink our teeth into the program, the better off we’ll be when it comes to those endurance races later in the year.”
Richards will be partnered by Max Twigg.
100 for 100
The team also announced that the M6 will run with #100 this season, a nod to the centennial year of the BMW Group.
“The arrival of the new M6 GT3 is a very big part of the centennial celebrations, and we have been able to confirm the number of the car with the Australian GT Championship organisers,” said Marc Werner, CEO of BMW Group Australia.
“This is the icing on the cake for us.”
Richards will have his first taste of the M6 GT3 during testing at Winton on Monday and Tuesday next week.