Craft-Bamboo Racing, representing Mercedes-AMG Team, delivered a masterclass in endurance racing at the Indianapolis 8 Hour Powered by AWS, the fourth round of the 2023 Intercontinental GT Challenge (IGTC) Powered by Pirelli. In a thrilling race that unfolded at the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the team’s triumphant journey culminated in a remarkable runner-up finish.

The Hong Kong-based outfit showcased their prowess from the outset, with a standout Qualifying session. Jules Gounon, who held the pole position in 2022, came tantalizingly close to repeating his feat. Falling short by just 33 thousandths of a second, the team’s performance meant they started the grueling eight-hour race from the front row, setting the stage for a fiercely contested battle.

As the race kicked off under sunny skies, Maximilian Götz assumed the driver’s seat in the MSI-liveried Mercedes-AMG GT3. Despite an initial drop in position, Götz exhibited exceptional skill, navigating the challenges and avoiding accidents during an impressive triple stint. The German driver maintained a strong position before handing over the reins to Raffaele Marciello during the first and only Safety Car intervention.

Marciello took control, setting consistently fast lap times around the 4.19 km Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. However, the team faced fierce competition, especially from a determined BMW team that relentlessly pursued Craft-Bamboo Racing’s position. Jules Gounon, in a double stint, found himself under attack from the chasing BMW, leading to a change in position. Despite their best efforts, Craft-Bamboo Racing settled for third temporarily.

An unexpected twist occurred during the final hour of the race. The front splitter of the #77 Craft-Bamboo Racing challenger began to come loose, impacting the car’s downforce. Raffaele Marciello, in a sensational display of skill and composure, expertly managed the situation. In a tense battle against time, Marciello maintained the team’s position, ultimately crossing the finish line in second place, a mere 0.53 seconds ahead of the trailing competitor after eight hours of intense racing.

While the result was undoubtedly commendable, there was a tinge of disappointment for Craft-Bamboo Racing. The noticeable pace disparity left the team unable to challenge the frontrunners. Nevertheless, the double podium at the Indianapolis 8 Hour garnered crucial points for Mercedes-AMG and IGTC Drivers’ standing leader, Jules Gounon. This sets the stage for an electrifying championship battle at the Gulf 12 Hours season finale.

Craft-Bamboo Racing extends sincere appreciation to its partners, including MSI, Theodore Racing, Lone Star Racing, Pikes Peak International Raceway, Hong Kong Asia Medical Group, Evisu, FreeM, and Gravity Partnership, for their unwavering support and contributions to this remarkable achievement.

Stay tuned to Asian Motorsport for in-depth coverage, providing you with the latest news and thrilling moments from the world of motorsport.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here