Experienced motorsport manager David Vervaart has been appointed as the new Category Manager for Australian GT, the Tasmanian-born Victorian having spent more than 30-years in the industry involved in multiple facets of the sport across Australia, Asia, Europe and the USA.
A former Commercial Manager in one of Australia’s leading Supercars teams, Vervaart has extensive experience in the operation and development of motorsport categories, whilst also enjoying time as a circuit manager, a team manager and a driver manager.
More recently Vervaart has been involved in motorsport retail, in fleet and dealer sales for a major Australian automotive group, whilst also present on the coal-face of the development of some of Asia’s leading sportscar and GT championships.
For Australian GT category owner Jim Manolios, he sees the appointment of Vervaart is an important next step in the development and success of the CAMS-supported championship, a factor which the two parties were keen to reinforce during Vervaart’s first appointment in the role with a visit to CAMS’ Melbourne HQ.
“Looking forward from the foundations that were laid over the last seven years, it was important to take the next step in the development of Australian GT with an experienced hand at the helm,” Manolios admitted.
“CAMS shared my view in that, and were keen to meet and endorse David in the role, as we all look to re-establishing Australian GT as one of the premier categories in Australian motorsport.
“We have some big plans for the coming seasons, but we also need to work more closely with the stakeholders of Australian GT to ensure we achieve the best result that we can moving forward. The motorsport landscape is changing constantly but also becoming very splintered with the growing number of new categories emerging, however GT3 competition worldwide is on a resurgence, and with quite a number of cars already on the ground in Australia, our aim is to get them out of garages and back on track.
“For us, this new appointment signals the start of the next chapter in Australian GT, and we’re very excited about what’s ahead.”
For Vervaart, the challenge of steering Australian GT into that next chapter is an exciting prospect, one in which he believes his past experiences will play a significant role.
“Having been a part of almost every angle you can approach the sport from – I can honestly say I am better prepared than ever to assist with the growth of Australian GT, and excited by the prospect of what’s to come,” Vervaart admitted.
“Having been involved with the SRO organisation over a 20 year span, and having seen the way the category has both evolved and recently re-energised, gives me the comfort of knowing there is nothing wrong with the model, and that GT3 still remains one of the most vibrant and successful categories of motorsport worldwide.
“I have already spoken with some of the stakeholders, and over the coming weeks will make direct contact with all of them to get a better picture of what we need to do to get the championship flourishing again, and I have no doubt that it will do just that over the coming seasons with the right ideas and the right kind of communication.”
Vervaart’s first commitment was to join category owner Jim Manolios at CAMS in Melbourne to endorse his appointment, and to also continue discussions about the future of Australian GT for which more announcements are pending.
He will then take over active duty from March 25, and front his first event at Barbagallo Wanneroo Raceway for the second round of the 2019 season under lights alongside Supercars on May 4-5.