Australian Carrera Cup Championship
|Last Drivers' champion||Craig Baird|
|Official website||Carrera Cup Australia|
The Australian Carrera Cup Championship is a sports car racing championship open to drivers of Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars. First held in 2003, it is administered by Porsche Cars Australia and sanctioned by CAMS as an Australian Championship. During its history, Carrera Cup has been a leading support category for the V8 Supercars Championship. New Zealand driver Craig Baird has won the series five times.
The regulations for the championship are based on those used for Porsche Carrera Cup racing series in Europe and the rest of the world, with modifications to the cars strictly controlled to ensure parity between competing vehicles. From 2003 to 2005 the specified model was the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 996) with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 997) used from 2006.
Jim Richards was the inaugural champion, fresh from having taken Porsche 996s to three consecutive Australian Nations Cup Championships. The series quickly proved its worthy as a ladder category for emerging young drivers with Alex Davison and Fabian Coulthard winning championships while Marcus Marshall, Jonathon Webb and David Reynolds were also early graduates. The series was also responsible for the creation of a number of professional motor racing teams, including Paul Cruikshank Racing and VIP Petfoods Racing while also giving teams like Sonic Motor Racing Services, Tekno Autosports and International Motorsport to expand.
In the lead up to the 2009 season the series organisers were forced to cancel the series, citing a lack of competitors. Those competitors left with 997 GT3 Cup Cars found themselves without a series to race in as the cars were neither able to compete in the Australian GT Championship, to which they were eligible but were prevented by CAMS with the intention of preventing the collapse that ultimately occurred or the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia as models newer than 996s were not eligible for points. As the situation evolved permission was gained for the Porsches to enter the GT series in strictly limited numbers and likewise 997s were allowed to compete in the GT3 Challenge but to compete to their own pointscore rather than take points away from the 996 and 993s that made up the bulk of the series competitors.
Porsche Cars Australia announced the series would return for the 2011 season featuring the 2011 specification version of the Type 997 GT3 Cup.
Since the series revival Craig Baird, already a two-time champion, has dominated, winning a further three championships.
|2003||Jim Richards||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 996|
|2004||Alex Davison||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 996|
|2005||Fabian Coulthard||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 996|
|2006||Craig Baird||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|
|2007||David Reynolds||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|
|2008||Craig Baird||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|
|2011||Craig Baird||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|
|2012||Craig Baird||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|
|2013||Craig Baird||Porsche 911 GT3 Cup Type 997|