TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK is poised for an early start to its 2024 programme after announcing its entry in the Hankook 6H Abu Dhabi (20-21 January), with a talented driving crew eager to do battle for glory in the team’s potent Toyota GR Supra GT4 Evo.
The Speedworks Motorsport-run squad is no stranger to the 24H Series, having contested a number of races in seasons past, and the 6H Abu Dhabi will raise the curtain on the championship’s forthcoming campaign.
The event will mark the Northwich, Cheshire-based outfit’s first time competing at Yas Marina Circuit, which has welcomed Formula 1 every year since 2009. Later this month, the focus will be very much on formidable GT thoroughbreds, with the striking 443bhp Supra – already a race-winner in the British GT Championship’s fiercely-disputed GT4 category – sure to be a leading contender.
Behind the wheel during the six-hour endurance challenge will be Michael O’Brien, Samuel Harrison and Kavi Jundi. O’Brien is the experienced hand; since switching from single-seaters to sportscars, he has established himself as a regular front-runner on the British GT scene and competed for the Jenson Button-led Jenson Team Rocket RJN. A former development driver for McLaren Automotive, he clinched the 2022 GT Cup crown in a McLaren 720S GT3.
Jundi is similarly a familiar face in the British GT paddock, while Harrison has progressed from historic cars into cutting-edge GT machinery in an impressively short space of time. Historic Formula Ford 1600 champion in 2022 – the same year that he topped Autosport’s National Driver Rankings, aged only 18 and in just his third season of car racing – the Yorkshireman is currently studying Aeronautical Engineering at Loughborough University. Abu Dhabi will represent his sportscar racing bow.
Danny Buxton, Head of Motorsport, Speedworks Motorsport, said:
“We’re eagerly anticipating the start of the season in Abu Dhabi. The team has been working diligently to prepare for this event, and we are confident in the capabilities of our drivers and the Toyota GR Supra GT4 Evo. It’s a fantastic opportunity to showcase our commitment to excellence in GT racing.”
Michael O’Brien, Driver, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK, said:
“I’m delighted to be making my debut with TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK and Speedworks Motorsport at the 6H Abu Dhabi. The 24H Series has put together some fantastic events over the winter, and it looks set to be ultra-competitive. My team-mates might lack a little bit of experience, but they’ve performed really well during testing, which bodes well for a solid, consistent race. I personally can’t wait to get going and hit the ground running in Abu Dhabi!”
Samuel Harrison, Driver, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK, said:
“I’m thrilled to be part of the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK team as I prepare to start my GT racing career. Having Michael [O’Brien] as a team-mate, with his extensive experience, is incredibly inspiring, and I’m keen to learn and grow under his guidance. Additionally, having someone as seasoned as Danny Buxton in the garage is an invaluable asset, and I look forward to soaking up as much knowledge as possible. The level of support and expertise within the team is truly remarkable, and I’m confident this year will be a pivotal chapter on my journey.”
Kavi Jundi, Driver, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK, said:
“I’m very excited to be working with Speedworks and taking part in the 6H Abu Dhabi. It’s a great opportunity to get to know the team and of course gain valuable track time in the Toyota GR Supra GT4 Evo. I’m also excited to be driving at Yas Marina Circuit. Hopefully we can dial into both the car and track very quickly and come away with a strong result.”