Three-time 24 Hours of Le Mans winner Marcel Fassler will join Jamec Pem Racing for the opening round of the CAMS Australian GT Championship.
Partnering 2017 champion Geoff Emery in an Audi R8 LMS, it marks Fassler’s first appearance in the category.
Emery last year won a nail-biting championship from Liam Talbot in a battle that ran until the final lap of the final race of the year, the Audi driver victorious by a slender 10 points after five rounds.
Kelvin van der Linde partnered Emery for much of the 2017 season, though a busy international GT schedule has ruled the South African out for 2018.
Instead, Audi has leveraged its extensive driver pool, with the German marque’s former LMP1 driver Fassler poised to fly the flag alongside Emery.
“I’m really excited to be back in the Audi with Audi Sport Customer Racing Australia, and even more excited to be in with Marcel,” said Emery.
“It was great to be partnered with Kelvin (van der Linde), and it’s a shame he can’t come back but I’m excited to instead have such a good driver like Marcel.
“I’m looking forward to meeting him and learning as much as I can.
“It’s exactly like Marco Bonanomi at Barbagallo in 2016, and he was fantastic to drive with, so it’s all good for me!”
Fassler has been part of the Audi fold since 2010, when he made his Le Mans debut for the German marque, finishing second.
A year later he won his first of three outright 24 Hours of Le Mans titles, and in 2012 was part of the World Endurance Championship winning squad with Andre Lotterer and Benoit Treluyer.
In 2017 the Swiss driver competed with Belgian Audi Club Team WRT in the Blancpain GT Series Cup, recording two wins during the season.
The Grand Prix outing is the first of a number for Fassler, who is scheduled to remain alongside Emery for the three CAMS Australian Endurance Championship races throughout the season.
The 2018 Australian GT Championship begins at the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix on March 22, with the opening endurance race of the year at The Bend Motorsport Park on April 14-15.