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Briscoe joins Vanwall for Bahrain WEC finale

Experienced sportscar racer Ryan Briscoe will return to the World Endurance Championship for next month's finale in Bahrain, joining the ByKolles team to race the Vandervell 680 Hypercar.

#708 Glickenhaus Racing Glickenhaus 007 of Ryan Briscoe

#708 Glickenhaus Racing Glickenhaus 007 of Ryan Briscoe

Alexander Trienitz

The US-based Australian becomes the car's sixth different driver of 2023, as he pairs up with Esteban Guerrieri and Tristan Vautier for the season-closing 8-hour race at the Sakhir circuit on 4 November.

Briscoe, who entered three races this season with the Glickenhaus-Pipo 007 LMH, replaces Joao Paulo de Oliveira who is unavailable due to a clashing Super GT round at Motegi.

De Oliveira took over from Tom Dillmann at the Monza and Fuji rounds following the Frenchman's departure from the team, while Vautier replaced Jacques Villeneuve after the 1997 Formula 1 world champion was dropped prior to Le Mans.

“I’m pleased to be joining the team for the final round of the 2023 World Endurance Championship,” said Briscoe, a seven-time race winner in IndyCar during a five-year stint with Team Penske from 2008 to 2012.

“I’d like to thank Dr Colin Kolles for the opportunity and look forward to my first laps in the Vandervell 680.”

Team principal Colin Kolles said: “Ryan is an excellent driver with a lot of experience in prototype racing cars.

“With Esteban, Tristan and Ryan we have a strong lineup for the last event of the 2023 FIA WEC season.”

#4 Floyd Vanwall Racing Team Vanwall Vandervell 680: Esteban Guerrieri, Tristan Vautier, João Paulo de Oliveira

#4 Floyd Vanwall Racing Team Vanwall Vandervell 680: Esteban Guerrieri, Tristan Vautier, João Paulo de Oliveira

Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images

After narrowly missing out on the IMSA SportsCar Championship title with Wayne Taylor Racing in a 2020 campaign that yielded Daytona 24 Hours and Petit Le Mans victories, Briscoe joined the Glickenhaus Hypercar project in the WEC and gave the car its competition debut at Portimao in 2021.

He finished third on his only WEC appearances with the boutique American manufacturer at Sebring and Le Mans in 2022, but against stiffer competition amid the influx of manufacturers into the top class in 2023 Glickenhaus struggled to repeat those highs.

The 42-year-old was part of the lineup that scored Glickenhaus's best result of 2023 at Le Mans, finishing sixth, but as in 2022, the decision was taken not to transport the cars to the flyaway end-of-season races to put the programme's future into doubt.

Briscoe previously was a stalwart of the Ford GT programme in IMSA and had before that spent two years as Corvette Racing's third driver for the endurance races, earning Daytona GTLM class wins with each brand in 2015 and 2018.

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