Expect to see two Groves on the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia grid later this season: Son-of-a-gun Brenton Grove is joining the championship at Sandown and Gold Coast.
The 20-year-old has joined Melbourne based team Porsche Centre Melbourne Motorsport to drive the 911 GT3 Cup car raced earlier in the season by German racer Lars Kern.
Grove, the son of TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge points leader Stephen Grove, currently races in the second-tier Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia series, where he sits second in the outright standings ahead of the GT3 Cup Challenge season finale at Phillip Island next weekend.
The young racer will then join the Carrera Cup championship the following weekend at Sandown Raceway, where he raced both last year in the Australian Formula 4 Championship and in April this year, where he claimed victory in the opening race of the 2017 GT3 Cup Challenge season.
“I look forward to my Carrera Cup debut at Sandown. I feel like this has been a long time coming as I’ve attended Carrera Cup events since Dad started racing in the series,” said Grove, who has been Grove Racing Team Manager since 2012.
“The opportunity to race with Porsche Centre Melbourne became available recently and I jumped at the chance. Porsche Centre Melbourne has won more Carrera Cup titles than any other team and, having been around the Carrera Cup traps for a few seasons, I know how well the Porsche Centre Melbourne team operates so it’s a privilege to now become part of it.
“I haven’t actually raced against Dad before, which will make the Sandown event fairly interesting. We have competed together in the same car on a few occasions, including at the Bathurst Motor Festival and Island Magic events, so I think we’re both looking forward to the chance of being on the track at the same time. Though we haven’t yet discussed what will happen if we actually do come up against each other on track!”
Meanwhile Porsche Centre Melbourne General Manager, Piero Pellegrini, is thrilled with Grove’s addition to the dealership’s Carrera Cup race team.
“We’re pleased to have Brenton join the Porsche Centre Melbourne Motorsport team. Not only has he proven himself as a fantastic young driver, as demonstrated by his performance in this season’s GT3 Cup Challenge series, but his nature outside the car makes him a tremendous ambassador for Porsche Centre Melbourne,” said Pellegrini.
“This move to Carrera Cup is an important step for Brenton in his motor racing career. GT3 Cup Challenge is the perfect preparation for a young driver entering Carrera Cup so, with this foundation, we look forward to supporting Brenton and providing him the guidance and resources required to best transition into what is one of Australia’s most competitive motor racing championships.”
The addition of Grove to the championship makes the Sandown event the first time the series has featured a father and son racing on track in separate Porsche entries. Indiran and Duvashen Padayachee entered the record books in 2015 by becoming the first father-son combination to compete in same Carrera Cup event, though the duo raced the same car at the Phillip Island Pro-Am.
Grove will use his two-event Carrera Cup campaign to display bonnet signage of White Ribbon Australia, a campaign to prevent men’s violence against women.