Stephane Ratel, one of the driving forces behind GT racing globally, will be an interested onlooker this weekend as the 2016 Australian GT season draws to a close at the spectacular Highlands Motorsport Park.
Mr Ratel heads the SRO Motorsport Group, the organising body which manages the Blancpain GT Series, the British GT Championship and the Intercontinental GT Challenge which takes in events across the globe, including the Bathurst 12 Hour.
Australian GT enjoys a strong relationship both with Mr Ratel and the SRO Motorsport Group, with organisers delighted the Frenchman accepted their invitation to witness one of the category's blue riband weekends.
"We're delighted that Stephane's accepted our invitation and taken time out of his busy schedule to experience the exceptional Highlands Motorsport Park this weekend," said Australian GT manager Ken Collier.
"Stephane invited Tony Quinn and I over to the Nurburgring last year and it was a fantastic experience.
"While we were there we extended an invitation to one of our rounds, so it's great that he'll be with this weekend."
Strong growth in GT racing globally has seen a dramatic rise in the Blancpain GT Series in recent years, which has been underscored with the recent announcement of the Blancpain GT Series Asia from 2017.
Interest in GT racing in Australia has been equally strong, and saw the category expand from a single competition in 2015 to three competitions in 2016, with the addition of the CAMS Australian Endurance Championship and CAMS Australian GT Trophy Series presented by Pirelli.
Each of the three competitions offers a unique style of racing, specifically catered to GT spec machinery from the world's leading automotive brands.
Australian GT employs the SRO Balance of Performance to manage the competitive side of the CAMS Australian GT Championship, CAMS Australian Endurance Championship and CAMS Australian GT Trophy Series presented by Pirelli.
The growth of the category continues next season with the recent announcement that GT4 cars will be welcomed into the CAMS Australian GT Trophy Series, which will also allow a new wave of older-spec GT3 machines to join the fold.
Mr Ratel's visit coincides with the now traditional Australian GT finale at Highlands Motorsport Park in New Zealand.
The picturesque circuit, located 45 minutes from Queenstown, has fast become one of the world's most iconic and popular circuits and this weekend will witness the crowning of both the CAMS Australian GT Championship and CAMS Australian Endurance Championship.
The CAMS Australian GT Championship will compete in two races on Saturday (November 12) before the fourth and final round of the CAMS Australian Endurance Championship on Sunday (November 13).