GR Supra GT4 debut, three titles – a successful year for TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Europe’s customer teams

  • Triple Champion: GR Supra GT4 reigns in France, GT86 in Germany and Sweden
  • 84 races, 25 class podiums, 11 class wins for GR Supra GT4 teams
  • GT86 CS-Cup driver Alec Arho-Havrén wins TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy

From zero to hero in less than five months; the new-for-2020 GR Supra GT4 left a lasting impression in its first year of racing. In its debut season, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Europe’s latest customer race car competed in 84 races, earning 25 class podiums, 11 class wins and its first title: Supra drivers Wilfried Cazalbon and Caesar Gazeau secured the Am Cup title at the FFSA GT – GT4 France season finale at Paul Ricard on 22 November.

The GR Supra GT4, which is powered by a 430bhp six-cylinder, in-line turbocharged engine, was homologated in March 2020 but, due to global circumstances, only made its competition debut on 27 June at the first round of the Nürburgring Langstrecken Serie (NLS), formerly known as VLN. What followed was an intense second half of the year for all of the first GR Supra GT4 customer teams, with a total of 142 hours of racing in which 21 different drivers took the wheel of the new car. These included newly-crowned FIA World Endurance Champion José María López and former Formula 1 driver Olivier Panis.

In its debut year, the GR Supra GT4 competed in four of the most important GT4 championships across Europe. The CMR team took part in the European GT4 Series and the FFSA GT – GT4 France with two cars entered in each, Speedworks Motorsport competed with a single car in the British GT Championship while in Germany, Ring Racing entered two Supras in the new DTM Trophy and competed in selected NLS rounds as well as the Nürburgring 24 Hours.

At the endurance race on the iconic Nürburgring Nordschleife, Ring Racing’s GR Supra GT4 saw the chequered flag third in its class, but was not classified due to a violation of the driver time regulations. Over in Japan, the first 24-hour attempt was more successful with Rookie Racing, who participate in the Super Taikyu Series, winning its class in the Fuji 24 Hours.

The GR Supra GT4’s debut season in numbers:

  • 84 races covering a total duration of 142 hours
  • 21 different drivers
  • 11 class wins, 25 class podiums
  • Winner of the FFSA GT – GT4 France Am Cup

While the GR Supra GT4 was new in 2020, the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy was held for the third time this year. The Europe-wide one-make series allows drivers of the GR Supra GT4, GT86 CS-R3, GT86 CS-Cup and GT86 CS-V3 to take part in races and rallies across Europe and fight for points and prize money. After two wins for German rally driver Hermann Gassner Jr, 2020 saw the circuit racing community fighting it out at the top.

The overall winner of the 2020 TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy and a prize money of EUR 25,000 will go to “Flying Finn” Alec Arho-Havrén who scored consistently in his GT86 CS-Cup, scoring 349 points in total. The Finn, and Swedish team-mate Ortwin Herterich, benefited from the 50-point Champions Bonus introduced this season thanks to winning his class in the Swedish Touring Endurance Championship (STEC). Herterich also earned second place in the Trophy with 323 points and receives EUR 15,000 of prize money.

Third, fourth and fifth places were occupied by the Nürburgring experts of the Belgian Team Pit Lane. Olivier Muytjens and Jacques Derenne won the title in the Nürburgring Langstrecken-Series’ SP3 class and also collected the 50-point Champions Bonus. While Muytjens (212 points) concludes the season in third with EUR 7,500 prize money, Derenne came fourth receiving EUR 5,000. Their team-mate “Brody” concluded the season in fifth place (156 points) and is rewarded with EUR 2,500. Behind them, German Alexander Müller (136 points) takes sixth place in the Trophy standings. He was also successful in his GT86 CS-Cup in the Nürburgring Langstrecken-Serie (NLS) and Rundstrecken Challenge Nürburgring (RCN).

An award ceremony with all participants and representatives from TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Europe will take place virtually on Friday, 4 December 2020.

Rob Leupen, Managing Director TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Europe: “First of all, we would like to thank all participants of this year’s TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy for their trust in us and our customer motorsport vehicles. Congratulations to the overall winner Alec Arho-Havrén. Despite 2020 being a challenging year due to the global situation, the GR Supra GT4 had an impressive first season bringing home several wins and even its first championship title. We are looking into a very promising future with the GR Supra GT4 and our GT86 customer cars.”

Alec Arho-Havrén, 2020 TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy champion: “First of all I would like to thank all my different team mates and sponsors during this season. Without them, this success would not have been possible. I am pleased to complete this difficult year with two championship wins, the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy and the Swedish Touring Endurance Championship. The GT86 CS-Cup race car is a well-balanced package and a joy to drive. My plans for next year include driving in the NLS and the Nürburgring 24 Hours – hopefully with the GT86 CS-Cup. That would be great!”

The 2020 TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy 2020 in numbers:

Participants

Nations

Results

Class wins

Class titles

14

7

47

17

5

This year a total of 14 drivers from seven European countries are registered for the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy. The lubricant specialists RAVENOL will be equipping all the GT86s and the GR Supra GT4s built by TGR-E with the initial oil filling, while all GR Supra GT4 cars are finished in partnership with coatings experts Axalta. PFC Brakes again supplied all participants with inexpensive high-performance brakes at special conditions.

Points within the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Trophy were once again awarded in relation to the size of the grid and length of the race. This year, however, every driver who saw the chequered flag got points. As before, those interested could register for the Trophy without a fee and compete for a prize money pot of EUR 55,000. TOYOTA Germany offered additional prize money for all drivers who race in Germany.

Copyright-free, high-resolution images are available from TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’s global media website www.tgr-dam.com.

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