Nicolas Baert will step up to the GT3 ranks in 2022 after signing with leading Audi squad Saintéloc Racing to contest the full Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS campaign.
The 20-year-old Belgian makes the transition from touring cars following two successful seasons in TCR Europe. Here he earned an impressive third-place finish in the 2020 standings and was named RACB Rookie of the Year, while he also picked up back-to-back TCR Benelux titles. Baert will now swap the Audi RS 3 LMS for the Ingolstadt marque's R8 LMS GT3 Evo model.
In doing so, he will link up with one of the most experienced teams in Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS history. A regular front-runner in the Sprint Cup, Saintéloc Racing has also proven to be a consistent force at the TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa, winning the 2017 edition and finishing each subsequent race among the overall top-six.
Though he is set to make his Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS debut in the season-opening trip to Imola (1-3 April), this will not be Baert's maiden outing for the Saintéloc squad. He joined the team for the 2021 Indianapolis 8 Hour and was at the wheel again during last weekend's Kyalami 9 Hour, scoring Silver Cup honours alongside Simon Gachet and Lucas Légeret in the Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli finale.
Baert's crew-mates for the 2022 season will be announced shortly. In recent years, Saintéloc Racing has run up to three cars in the Sprint Cup and two Endurance Cup entries. The squad will be present at the official Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS test days, which are scheduled to take place on 7-8 March at Circuit Paul Ricard.