2020 will still be a blur for Bathurst winner Pepper
The 2020 international GT race season started quite brilliantly for South African Bentley Boy Jordan Pepper when he won the Bathurst 12 Hour sharing his Continental GT3 with Jules Gounon and Maxime Soulet in Australia in February. Like all else since, racing went dead through lockdown as he kept sharp in sim racing, but Pepper is now poised for a frantic balance of the season with a mad few months of racing ahead.
“It was so good to race a real car again at the Imola 3 Hour over the past weekend!” Jordan admitted. “As brilliant a memory it is, Bathurst seems such a long time ago now, but happily the season is finally back in full force and I have a huge schedule of races back to back from now though to the end of the year.”
Factory driver Pepper has a double-program in place with two major Bentley’s customer teams, US outfit K-pax Racing in the GT World Challenge Europe, where he is sharing a Continental GT3 with Ex Bentley factory driver Andy Soucek and GT star Alvaro Parente. Jordan will also share a T3 Motorsport Continental GT3 in the German ADAC GT Masters with Austrian youngster Constantine Schöll.
“The K-pax European GT effort is a full pro line up with Andy, Alvaro and me and the season finally got going again over the past weekend. “Imola doesn’t really suit the Bentley, but we found a really good race set-up and made great progress until an AM Ferrari parked us in at a stop and we came out seventh, but Alvaro incurred a drive-through penalty, which dropped us back — frustrating, but a positive weekend.”
Jordan heads back to Italy for the next European GT round on 7 August, before the Nürburgring in Germany and then there’s a bit of a break there before Spa 24 Hour late in October and then Paul Ricard mid-October. In between all that, the ADAC GT Masters campaign starts at Lausitzring this coming weekend before Nürburgring mid-August, Hockenheim in September; Sachesenring, Red Bull Ring in Austria and the new Zandvoort in Holland in October and then Oschersleben in November.
“Bentley has placed me in a supporting role with the relatively young T3 Motorsport team, which is bringing young talent into super competitive ADAC GT Masters. “It’s a different focus and we plan to make progress and hopefully score some strong results with a new Bentley team in Constantine’s first year in GT3, but it’s awesome to be back where I made my GT debut in 2015 with Audi and then with Bentley in 2016.”
Reflecting on lockdown, Jordan kept himself busy with sim racing, which exploded through that period. “I raced for K-pax in the e-GT series — as far as I’m aware, I ended up finishing fifth or fourth in the championship with a win at opening round. “I was a little unlucky to be taken out a few times — once from the lead and twice while looking good for podium, but it was very good to keep focus.
“Now we are back to real racing again — it’s going to be quite mad with a full schedule and there may be even more races to come, but I really cannot wait for this extraordinary few months!”
Jordan Pepper’s 2020 Race Calendar
31 Jul — ADAC GT Lausitzring
14 Aug — ADAC GT Nürburgring
06 Sep — GT WCE Nürburgring
18 Sep — ADAC GT Hockenheimring
02 Oct — ADAC GT Sachesenring
16 Oct — ADAC GT Red Bull Ring
25 Oct — GT WCE Spa 24
30 Oct — ADAC GT Zandvoort
06 Nov — ADAC GT Oscherslieben
15 Nov — GT WCE Paul Ricard