Pro-Am battle to add to S5000 competition in Tasman, Gold Star series
A PRO-AM category will be added to the S5000 Tasman Series and 2023 S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship.
Adelaide-based GT World Challenge racer Mark Rosser is the first entry to the new ‘race within a race’ in S5000, which will recognise Pro-Am competition at each round alongside the outright race and round winners.
Rosser will enter the Tasman Series driving for Team BRM when he makes his ‘wings and slicks’ racing debut at the Boost Mobile Gold Coast 500.
The South Australian has proven highly competitive in his GT World Challenge Audi R8 GT3, including a strong campaign in the Bathurst 12 Hour earlier this year.
He has already completed several test days aboard Team BRMs S5000 machinery ahead of confirming his race debut.
The dedicated class for non-professional drivers will be known as S5000 Pro-Am in the Tasman Series, while in the 2023 S5000 Australian Drivers Championship ‘Silver Star’ nomenclature will return to define the class.
The ‘Silver Star’ was introduced in the Formula Holden / Brabham era of the Australian Drivers’ Championship competition with its return a further nod to the history of Australian Open Wheel racing.
Driver categorisation will mirror that utilised in existing championships that feature both Professional and Pro-Am categories, including the Dunlop Super3 / V8 Touring Cars Series.
Prize pools and awards for the Pro-Am / Silver Star class competitors will be announced closer to both the Tasman Series and the 2023 S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship.
“I’m looking forward to jumping in the S5000 for the Tasman Series,” Rosser said.
“The Gold Coast looks like a good challenge so I’m excited for that, but mostly I am excited for the Adelaide 500 as my fascination with motorsport started there back in the 1980s, seeing the F1 cars flying around the streets of my home city. To get to drive an open-wheel car on that circuit will be an amazing experience.
“We are planning to do a few more days in the car before Gold Coast which should help me get somewhat up to speed, and in general my driving has improved a lot since the start of the year as well.
“The addition of the Pro-Am class has a lot of appeal and I’m hoping to have some fellow drivers to compete with for this title.”
“S5000 has to this point operated as one of the few major national categories without a defined category or class for semi-professional drivers to compete against each other,” McMellan said.
“It was the logical next step in the evolution in the category and comes off the back of feedback from our teams and potential competitors in a Pro-Am category.
“It’s a tough ask for someone like Mark Rosser, for example, to compete for trophies with a young star like Joey Mawson – but they still have the drive to race open wheelers at a high level.
“The Pro-Am class, and the Silver Star award in the 2023 championship, gives them an opportunity to compete for their own awards while continuing to benchmark themselves on the outstanding professional talent racing at the front of the field.
“We have had positive early interest for both the 2022 Tasman Series and the 2023 Championship and we’re looking forward to seeing it evolve.”