The Greek flag will be on prominent display during the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour, on 13-15 May when Greek Australians, owner Eric Constantinidis, and Aaron Zerefos, with Carrera Cup racer Indiran Padayachee, get behind the wheel of their Porsche in a race that has drawn an international field as well as leading Australian drivers.

“The car is easy to spot. It is wrapped black with sponsor’s names in white. The Greek flag will be on either side of the car between my name and Zerefos name,” car owner and co-driver Constantinidis told Neos Kosmos. “It’s a minimalist look that makes the car easy to spot.”

Aaron Zerefos earned his place on the three-man team thanks to his racing experience and his performance in last months’ Bathurst 6 Hour where he co-drove the MilkLab BMW 130i M Sport to a more than respectable third in its class.

Doing well in the race after a long COVID layoff, was a pleasing result for Mr Zerefos and showed to himself as well as others that he was in good racing shape.

“The phone rang the Monday after last month’s Bathurst 6 Hour, where I finished third in Class C in the BMW 130i,” Zerefos said. “The owner of the team Our Kloud-UpTo11Motorsport, Eric Constantinidis asked if I wanted to drive his Porsche with him an Indiran in the 12 Hour. We had an espresso in Potts’s Point the next day and the deal was done.”

Our Kloud is linked in a deal with and Upto11 Motorsport which consists of a group of private racing enthusiasts of which Constantinidis is a founding member.

Aaron Zerefos strapped to the Our Kloud-UpTo11Motorsport Porsche in preparation for this week’s Bathurst 12. Photo: Supplied

It will be Zerefos’ eighth Bathurst 12 hour in a Porsche. His best finish was second in class in 2016 but this year the, #11 Type 991.2 Porsche GT3 Cup car that he is co-driving is good enough, he thinks, for a top-10 finish overall.

“We had a shakedown of the car at Sydney Motorsport Park on Monday and from the moment I climbed behind the wheel, I was impressed with the equipment,” Mr Zerefos said. “Looking at the entry list, we’re aiming to be in the mix for a class podium and maybe even an outright top-10 finish.”

The car is a purpose-built race car and its 4-litre rear-mounted six-cylinder engine is capable of reaching 300km/h on Mount Panorama Racing Circuit’s Conrod Straight. It will hit 100km/h in three seconds.

With 20 cars racing this year, the field is smaller than normal but the competition will be fierce with Audi, Mercedes AMG bring in cars and crews. Australian and New Zealand stars Shane van Gisbergen, Craig Lowndes, Geoff Emery will be fellow competitors to the Greek-Australian team.

“The 12 Hour is a tough race and it’s always a strong field but we will chip away, buy a ticket to the last hour and ensure we have a strong package to bring it to the chequered flag.

“Looking at the entry list, we’re aiming to be in the mix for a class podium and maybe even an outright top-10 finish,” Mr Zerefos said.

While Zerefos and Padayachee are experienced door-to-door racers Constantinidis, the car’s owner is a late starter to this level of competition, however he is not fazed by the challenge.

“This will be my second enduro drive. In February I came second in the Porsche class of and AMR (Australian Motor Racing) enduro race and seventh overall in a field of 20 cars. My second race (with GT cars) on Phillip Island I had problems with the car in the first race. I started last on the grid for the second race but managed to claw back six places. Our race team engineers at Michael Newton Auto have since resolved the issue and I can only see improvements here as I get more seat time.”

He has been a motoring enthusiast his whole life. He helped to found Upto11 Motorsport a group of now 55 private motor racing enthusiasts who lease famous racing tracks around Australia, including Mount Panorama in Bathurst and Phillip Island, to enjoy the tracks, develop skills at advanced speeds racing with each other.

“We teach each other to drive and get instructors to coach us. There are six Greek-Australians in the group.”

Constantinidis said at Bathurst, the target would be to drive a consistent race through the first 11 hours keeping the car in good shape and in a good place from which to launch in final hour when the real racing will take place.

“The forecasts suggest it could be a wet race, so no lap records will be broken, but it will even out the field,” Constantinidis said. “I can’t wait to race.”The race will be shown live on Channel 7 and Fox Sports.