In 2009, it was the Audi R8 LMS, which was the upstart, shaking up the order at the VLN endurance championship, and resetting opinions about what those 4 rings from Ingolstadt mean.

The R8 quickly established itself among the front runners in the races, and the battle between it and the Porsche from Manthey in the 2009, created one of the most exciting races of all time.

In 2010, the new boy honours were split between BMW's M3 GT2, and Porsche's Hybrid. With both cars running in experimental classes, albeit for very different reasons, they weren't quite competing on the same playing field as the Audis, and other Porsches... however for overall victory they could fight like the best of them - with the Hybrid leading for much of the 24hr race, although final hour fragility gifted the win to the BMW.

For 2011, all the above contestants are returning to do battle once more, but now there is, as you might have guessed from the picture up the top a new gun in town.

Sounding more like a piston engined fighter plane, than a car, the Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 is a scary beast.
First impressions are around the size of it, it is massive! Second impression, is its quick, very quick! It actually debuted at the end of 2010, in the VLN races for some shake downs.
After a not so salubrious first effort, which ended at pretty much the first corner, after a collision, it went on to win its second race... and the VLNs so far in 2011, have shown it to be very competitive too.

Being field by  Mamerow (who have dropped their Porsche GT3-R which they won some races with last year), and Black Falcon amongst others, SLSes appear to have won their GT3 class every race so far - with overall victory coming in one of them.

It's looking good, and is sure to ensure that we'll have another spectacular 24h race on our hands come the end of June!