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Historic Endurance season kicks off with the Spa 3 Hours

The 2024 Iberian Historic Endurance season will kick off on one of motorsport's most acclaimed stages, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, with the traditional longest race on the calendar - the ‘3 Heures of Spa’ - on a weekend that will be slightly different from previous editions.

With this year's edition of the Spa Summer Classic brought forward by two months, the ‘3 Hours of Spa’ will be held slightly earlier this year than usual. However, this change of position in the calendar has not affected the magnitude of the event, which will once again bring together an impressive starting grid, with some of the best racing cars in the GT and Touring car categories built up to 1976.

The numbers for the first race of the year at the self-styled ‘most beautiful circuit in the world’ are impressive. A total of 67 cars from 16 different manufacturers will line up on the grid, driven by more than 130 drivers of 13 different nationalities and with diverse backgrounds in motorsport.

The entry list includes several familiar faces from world motorsport who need no introduction, such as former BTCC champions Gordon Shedden and Andrew Jordan, former DTM driver Vanina Ickx, daughter of Jack Ickx, Ford's official WEC driver Ben Barker, former Belgian Touring Car champion Pierre-Alain Thibault and former FIA-GT drivers Cor Euser and Markus Palttala.

This living and sounding museum, which takes us back more than five decades in time, presents itself at ‘le Toboggan des Ardennes’ with iconic models from the motor industry, such as the Shelby Cobra, Porsche 911, Ford Mustang or Jaguar E, but also brings us ‘rarer’ cars such as the TVR Grantura, the Gilbern 1800 or the Turner GT.

Names and cars aside, the race promises to be demanding, as in addition to the almost seventy cars on track, on a selective 7.004 kilometre circuit, there are also the inclement high-speed corners of the Belgian circuit and its capricious climate, influenced by the Ardennes forest, which means that at some point the rain could make itself felt and complicate matters for the teams and drivers. This, in a race where team strategy and good pit stop management are more important than pure speed.

Contrary to what has been customary until now, this time the race will be held entirely over the weekend and the race will not be held late on Saturday afternoon, with the constraints that this entailed, but on Sunday morning. Qualifying will take place on Saturday afternoon at 5.10pm (local time), while the three-hour race will be held on Sunday morning, with the start scheduled for 9.50am.

In addition to winning the race and their respective categories, the winner of the Index of Performance will also be contested at iconic locations such as L'Eau Rouge, Raidillon, Kemmel, Malmedy, Stavelot, Blanchimont, or La Source. This classification, known as the Historic Endurance's flagship, prioritizes older and smaller cars. The Austin Healey and the Lotus Elan are perennial favorites to clinch victory and the opportunity to claim an exclusive prize—a creation infused with Latin soul and Swiss haute horlogerie, crafted by Cuervo y Sobrinos.

For Diogo Ferrão, head of Historic Endurance, the 3 Hours of Spa ‘opens the season with an extraordinary grid, both in quality and quantity. We haven't seen a grid like this since Brexit, which coincided with the pandemic, which is a sign that the world is returning to normality. I'd like to give a special welcome to the drivers from Japan and the United States who are returning to the race after a few years' absence.’


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