Australian GT will enter a new era in 2019, with incumbent owner Tony Quinn selling the category rights to Trofeo Motorsport’s Jim Manolios after a tenure of almost seven years at the helm, taking the sport from almost obscurity through to one of the leading GT3 championships in the world.
Manolios – the distributor of Pirelli Motorsport tyres in Australia, amongst other business interests – and a regular competitor in Australian GT admitted that the acquisition of Australian GT was a natural extension of Trofeo’s interests in the series, and that whilst he had some big plans for the future of the category, that the remainder of 2018 was very much about continuity.
“I’m very excited to reveal that Trofeo Motorsport have extended their relationship with CAMS through the addition of the CAMS Australian GT Championship, CAMS Australian Endurance Championship and the CAMS Australian GT Trophy Series,” Manolios confirmed.
“We’ve been right there alongside Tony [Quinn] since the inception of the new-look Series in 2013, and we’re proud to be able to carry on the wonderful work that he and his team did in resurrecting the championship across the last six seasons.
“Obviously we can’t do much about the current season as the schedule is already set, but our immediate aim is to talk with all the teams and stakeholders about 2019, and work on the next exciting chapter in the championship,”
Whilst Tony Quinn shifts his focus to his other business interests, including his two New Zealand circuits – one of which will host the final round of the 2018 Australian GT season – the remainder of the management structure of Australian GT will remain intact, with Ken Collier continuing on at the helm as Category Manager and delegate for the FIA GT Commission.
“I think it’s important that the category continues to evolve, so whilst the last six years has seen significant growth under Tony’s leadership, I think it’s time to make some more positive changes that move with the way the market has been evolving, whilst also working closely with SRO (SRO Motorsports Group – global promoters of GT3) and the very people who have invested so much into the category – the teams,” Manolios confirmed.
“For Trofeo Motorsport this is a logical progression for us with our investment in the category through Pirelli. It gives us – and the category – stability moving forward, and that’s important on all fronts, but our goal is long-term, and obviously in making all levels of Australian GT an ongoing success.”