Marc VDS to take on Baku World Challenge

The unusual event on the streets of Azerbaijan's capital marks the final round of the FIA GT Series.

Gosselies, Belgium - BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS will take on the unique Baku World Challenge with one BMW Z4 GT3. Marc VDS regulars Nick Catsburg and Maxime Martin will share the driving duties.

Nick Catsburg, Maxime Martin
Nick Catsburg, Maxime Martin

Photo by: XPB Images

The unusual event on the streets of Azerbaijan's capital marks the final round of the FIA GT Series, and is open to competitors on an invitation only basis. Successful cars from the various GT3 series around Europe come together for this one special occasion. There is not only pride in victory, as a large prize fund - 100,000 Euros for the winning team - awaits.

The real challenge of the event, though, is the track. A completely new street circuit will be used, with the stunning Baku city backdrop, and it is completely unlike any circuit the team have raced on in recent years. Street circuits have little or no space between the race track and the barriers and any mistake - easy to make on a bumpy city centre surface - will be punished immediately.

It is also a big opportunity to race in the Asian market, a stage Marc VDS have not been present on since the FIA GT1 World Championship in 2011. BMW Motorsport were keen to see their brand represented and a deal was struck to see the BMW Sports Trophy banner once more fielded by Marc VDS.

Nick Catsburg, driver BMW Z4 GT3: "I am very happy to be going to Baku with BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS. I'm proud to be working so closely with BMW Motorsport. This event seems great to me, and the venue looks absolutely fantastic. It's cool to be teamed up with Max - I've only raced with him once, but we won on my debut at the Nordschleife so I hope we can continue that form!. Last year the BMW Z4 GT3 was strong in Baku so I hope it will be the same in 2013! I'd like to thank the team for supporting me this season and giving me this opportunity to race in Baku."

Bas Leinders, Team Principal: "This race is going to be a great spectacle, and we're very excited to be heading out to Asia again, which we haven't done since GT1. Street races are exciting, but they're also punishing and any mistake can be costly - it's brilliant for the fans. BMW Motorsport's backing is obviously a fantastic thing to have and we're proud to be working with them closely again after the success we achieved together at the 24 Hours of Nürburgring. I've got a lot of confidence in the driving squad, especially after their win together in VLN. I'm really looking forward to being a part of such a unique event."

Team Marc VDS

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About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Bas Leinders , Maxime Martin
Teams Marc VDS Racing , Marc VDS Racing
Article type Preview
Tags azerbaijan, baku, bmw, catsburg, fia-gt, marc vds, martin