Conquest Racing w/ Ferrari is ready to take its prancing horse and ride on down to the iconic Circuit of the Americas, which will serve as the setting for the third round of the 2023 Fanatec GT World Challenge Championship. Manny Franco and Alessandro Balzan will be getting back in the saddle and back behind the wheel of the #21 Corsa Horizon Ferrari 296 GT3 in the Pro Class. The American-Italian pairing both possess a great deal of experience at the Austin-based track, and are more than equipped to challenge for another podium result following their second-place finish at NOLA Motorsports Park in the previous round.
Although this will be Balzan and Franco’s first time co-driving the Ferrari 296 GT3 at Circuit of the Americas for a race weekend, this is not their first rodeo. The two have a great deal of experience there that they will be bringing to the table, in addition to recently completing test sessions at the track just over one week ago leading up to the event.
“I’m very excited to be racing at COTA,” said Alessandro Balzan. “I raced here for the first time back in 2013 and I’ve always loved this circuit. We had two great days of testing and the Ferrari 296 GT3 is very fun to drive around this track. With Conquest Racing and Corsa Horizon, Manny and myself were able to try out many different solutions and set ups, and we made adjustments along the way. Going into this round we are feeling confident and we are positive that we have a strong package.”
“I can’t wait to go racing at COTA, I love this track,” added Texas-resident Manny Franco. “Alessandro and I hugely benefited from our time testing here just a couple of weeks ago, and the team put in so much work in order to provide us with a very competitive package. We’re ready to get rolling in Austin, this is going to be a very fun round! I am excited to be racing in front of my friends and family this weekend, it’s good to be at my hometrack.”
The 19-turn, 2.3 mile course returns to the SRO Motorsports calendar after a one year hiatus. This presents a unique opportunity as the grid will have to familiarize themselves with the location once again, with some competitors likely experiencing it for the very first time. Meanwhile, Franco and Balzan have already been acquainted with the Texas track for a great deal of time, with Franco previously winning at COTA as recently as last month.
The first race of the weekend will kick off Saturday, May 20th, at 3:10 PM CT, while Race 2 will take place Sunday, May 21st, at 2:15 PM CT. Both races will be broadcast live on GT World’s YouTube channel.