Pirelli World Challenge - Sprint - GT/GTA and GT4/GTS
Event: Pirelli World Challenge Grand Prix of Utah, Utah Motorsports Campus
Dateline: Tooele, Utah
Date: Saturday, August 12 and Sunday, August 13
Track Length: 3.048-miles, 24-turns
Race Duration: SprintX, GT/GTA. Two, 60-minute races
SprintX, GT4/GTS. Two, 60-minute races
Sprint, GT4/GTS. Two, 50-minute races
Class: GT-X (Porsche 911 GT3 R)
GTC-X (Porsche 911 GT3 Cup)
GTS-X (Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR)
Round: SprintX GT-X. Rounds 7 and 8 of 10
SprintX GTC-X. Rounds 7 and 8 of 10
SprinxX GTS-X. Rounds 7 and 8 of 10
Sprint GT4/GTS. Rounds 13 and 14 of 18
Next Round: PWC Grand Prix of Texas, Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, September 1 -3, 2017
Event Story Lines
Porsche Pair Podiums. No. 912 911 RSR Works Car and No. 73 911 GT3 R Take Pair of Second-Places.
The new Porsche 911 RSR continues on the road to success in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. After its maiden victory at Lime Rock Park, the 510 hp racer from Weissach, Germany clinched second-place in the GTLM class in a finale on the legendary Road America racetrack in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. In the GTD class, the No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R earned its second-consecutive podium, taking a second-place finish in the Pro-Am style class.
After the two-hour, 40-minute race on the 4-mile circuit, Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) and Gianmaria Bruni (Italy) were a mere six-tenths of a second off claiming the Porsche GT Team's second victory in the new-for-2017 911 RSR. The pair also scored second-place at Porsche's victory at Lime Rock Park two weeks ago. Their team colleagues and the winners of the Lime Rock race, Patrick Pilet (France) and Dirk Werner (Germany), lost ground after a collision in the final stint of the race and ultimately had to settle for eighth-place. The Porsche GT Team fields the 911 RSR which was developed from scratch specifically for this season on the basis of the high-performance 911 GT3 RS sports car.
At the wheel of the No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR, Bruni initially managed to advance from fourth to third-place. In his slipstream, Pilet even overtook two competitors in the No. 911 racer. The two held on to these positions until the first round of pit stops. For Porsche, the race remained rather unspectacular - until the last hour. Vanthoor, made the most of the short pit stop to snatch the lead. However, when the race went green after a safety car phase, he veered too wide and had to let the Ford past. In a gripping finale, he pulled out all stops and tried everything to reclaim the lead, but narrowly missed the win at the flag. For Werner, who took over from Pilet, the restart was even more dramatic. After falling victim to an accident involving a Corvette, he went off course, coming to rest in a gravel travel.
In the GTD class, in which Porsche customer teams field the 500 hp 911 GT3 R, Porsche works driver Jörg Bergmeister (Germany) took second-place. Two weeks ago at Lime Rock, he celebrated his first win of the season with Patrick Lindsey (Santa Barbara, California).
Round Nine of the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will be contested on August 27 at the Virginia International Raceway in Danville, Virginia.
Dr. Michael Steiner, Board Member for Research and Development Porsche AG.
"The Porsche GT Team missed out on clinching the second straight win by a fraction of a second on this fantastic racetrack. But once again, everyone put in a strong team effort. The IMSA SportsCar Championship is a blue ribbon sports car series. Fans witness gripping and fiercely contested races, especially in the GT categories. I found it interesting to follow the tremendous teamwork from the pits during the qualifying session."
Marco Ujhasi, Director GT Factory Motorsports.
"We kept improving over the whole race weekend. During practice we saw that we couldn't match the pace of the fastest over a lap. So we concentrated on preparing for the race. That paid off. In the race we were up with the play until the end and we were in a position to fight for victory. Unfortunately it wasn't quite enough. Still, we're very pleased with the progress we've made over the weekend. It's a shame that our number 911 racer was virtually kicked out of contention in a collision in the first corner after the restart. This cost us a lot of championship points. This car, too, was totally competitive today. We'll be taking a lot of positive insights with us to the next round in Virginia. Until then, we'll focus on the things that still need working on."
Laurens Vanthoor, Driver, No. 912 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
"What a rollercoaster race. We came into the pits earlier than scheduled prior to a caution phase, because we suspected we had a tire problem, and that cost us the lead. We definitely had some luck on our side because there was nothing wrong with the tires. After the restart, I wanted to overtake a slower GTD vehicle but he blocked me and that led to a mistake. It's annoying to lose the lead and possibly even victory because of this, but such things happen. Nevertheless, finishing second on this tricky circuit is a good result."
Gianmaria Bruni, Driver, No. 912 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
"That was a really tough race. I got away well at the start but the Ford managed to overtake me in corner three. The team had worked out a great strategy, which Laurens implemented almost perfectly after the pit stop. Right up until shortly before the finish I thought we might win. But second place is a great result and a good motivation for the remaining races of the season."
Patrick Pilet, Driver, No. 911 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
"Our 911 RSR ran brilliantly again today, and the team provided great support. Unfortunately it just wasn't our race. It's a pity, because we were actually good enough to win at Road America, too, but we just couldn't do it. Now we'll try again in Virginia."
Dirk Werner, Driver, No. 911 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
"In the closing phase of the race we still had every chance open to us. After the final round of pit stops I was running in fifth and I wanted to overtake the Corvette in front of me after the safety car phase. But, while braking, he pulled to the left in the last moment and forced me into the gravel trap. He was given a penalty, but that didn't do us any good. I'm pleased for our team colleagues in the number 912 car and I hope that we can make more out of our good possibilities in Virginia."
Jörg Bergmeister, Driver, No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
"We had the speed over the entire weekend. The 911 GT3 R felt really good and Patrick drove a strong race. I had just overtaken an Acura and was running second when I had to pit with a puncture. Basically, that should have been the end of our race. But luckily the safety car came out again shortly afterwards, and our pit stop was super short compared to the competition because we'd only just refueled. This put me back in second-place."
Enduring Sprint. Pirelli World Challenge Customers Return to SprintX Championship.
Following two Sprint Championship events, the Pirelli World Challenge (PWC) returns to the SprintX format this week at Utah Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah. This means a return to the two-driver format and a pair of 60-minute races scheduled for August 12 and 13. With only four races remaining to determine the 2017 SprintX Champion, the stakes are high as ten Porsche Motorsport-built racecars head to the 3.048-mile, 24-turn track for Rounds 7 and 8 of the ten-race championship. Six Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MRs will be part of the count as they race in the 50-minute, Sprint format GTS/GT4 class.
Porsche won both SprintX races here in 2016 when Preston Calvert (Potomac, Maryland) and Porsche Young Driver Academy graduate Michael Lewis raced a Porsche 911 GT3 R to the titles. Calvert returns in the No. 77 Porsche but with 2016 PWC GT Cup Champion Alec Udell (The Woodlands, Texas). Porsche factory drivers Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California) and Jörg Bergmeister (Germany) will fight for a second SprintX GT class win for Wright Motorsports in the No. 58 Porsche Consulting 911 GT3 R. Wright teammates Michael Schein (Glen Cove, New York) and Jan Heylen (Tampa, Florida) look to continue their winning ways in the No. 16. Porsche factory driver Wolf Henzler (Germany) makes his first SprintX start with Jon Fogarty (Bend, Oregon) in the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings 911 GT3 R. This will be the first SprintX race for the GAINSCO "Red Dragon" too. The popular team has been focusing on the Sprint Championship up to this time. Porsche Young Professional Mathieu Jaminet (France) reprises his role as co-driver to James Sofronas (Villa Park, California) in the No. 14 GMG Porsche 911 GT3 R.
The Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR is the German marque's official entry into international GT4 class racing and three of the mid-engine racers will challenge in the GTS-X class of the SprintX. The No. 47 NOLAsport Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR of Jason Hart (Flower Mound, Texas) and Matt Travis (The Woodlands, Texas) will face off against the Nos. 017 and 018 Case-It Racing Porsches. Adam Merzon (Greenwich, Connecticut) and Trent Hindman (West Long Branch, New Jersey) will race the No. 017 while Cameron Cassels (Canada) and Philip Bloom (New York, New York) are in the No. 018 for both 60-minute shows.
Two Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars are also entered for the Utah race in the GTC-X class. The No. 95 Tool Racing "Cup car" of Andy Lee (Colorado Springs, Colorado) and Erich Joiner (Manhattan Beach, California) will make its SprintX debut in Tooele while the No. 90 Autometrics Motorsports 911 GT3 Cup of Joe Toussaint (Houston, Texas) and Cory Friedman (Charleston, South Carolina) look for a victory in the class as well.
Six Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MRs, will also compete in Rounds 13 and 14 of the 50-minute, single driver format GT4/GTS races. Three of the cars running SprintX will likewise campaign the Sprint races with Case-It Racing entering its Nos. 017 and 018 for Merzon and Cassels respectively and Keith Jensen (Dorado, Puerto Rico) in the No. 047 NOLAsport car. Flying Lizard Motorsports brings its traditional livery and two young and fast drivers to Utah for Sprint-only races. Rodrigo Baptista (Spain) will campaign the No. 3 and Nate Stacy (Tulsa, Oklahoma) in the No. 14. Both are a constant threat for race wins. Making his class debut at UMC in a Cayman GT4 Clubsport will be Carter Yeung (Los Angeles, California) in the No. 7 GMG Racing entry.
PPorsche Entries at Utah.
Pirelli World Challenge.
Total Car Count: 16 Porsche Motorsport racecars will be competing in the Pirelli World Challenge Grand Prix of Utah at the Utah Motorsports Campus. In the Sprint-X series (Rounds 7 and 8), five Porsche 911 GT3 Rs will challenge in the GT-X races, three Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR will race in GTS-X while two Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars will run the GTC-X class. Six Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MRs will contend for the GT4/GTS honors of the Sprint Championship (Rounds 13 and 14).
GT Class - Three (3) Porsche 911 GT3 R.
No. 58 Wright Motorsports Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California)/ Jörg Bergmeister (Germany)
No. 77 Calvert Dynamics Preston Calvert (Potomac, Maryland)/ Alec Udell (The Woodlands, Texas)
No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Wolf Henzler (Germany)/Jon Fogarty (Bend, Oregon)
GTA-X Class - Two (2) Porsche 911 GT3 R.
No. 14 GMG Racing Mathieu Jaminet (France)/ James Sofronas (Villa Park, California)
No. 16 Wright Motorsports Michael Schein (Glen Cove, New York)/ Jan Heylen (Tampa, Florida)
GT4/GTS-X Class - Three (3) Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR.
No. 47 NOLAsport Jason Hart (Flower Mound, Texas)/Matt Travis (The Woodlands, Texas)
No. 017 Case-It Racing Adam Merzon (Greenwich, Connecticut)/ Trent Hindman (West Long Branch, New Jersey)
No. 018 Case-It Racing Cameron Cassels (Canada)/ Philip Bloom (New York, New York)
GTC-X - Two (2) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
No. 90 Autometrics Motorsports
Joe Toussaint (Houston, Texas)/ Cory Friedman (Charleston, South Carolina)
No. 95 Tool Racing
Andy Lee (Colorado Springs, Colorado)/ Erich Joiner (Manhattan Beach, California)
GT4/GTS Class - Six (6) Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR.
No. 3 Flying Lizard Motorsports
Rodrigo Baptista (Spain)
No. 7 GMG Racing
Carter Yeung (Los Angeles, California)
No. 14 Flying Lizard Motorsports
Nate Stacy (Tulsa, Oklahoma)
No. 47 NOLAsport
Keith Jensen (Dorado, Puerto Rico)
No. 017 Case-It Racing
Adam Merzon (Greenwich, Connecticut)
No. 018 Case-It Racing
Cameron Cassels (Canada)
Where to Watch:
All Pirelli World Challenge Series information, audio and live timing and scoring for each on-track session is additionally available at www.world-challenge.com.
Pirelli World Challenge. Channel/Web Address
Qualifying Broadcast www.world-challenge.com
Friday, August 11
10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m. ET
9:20 a.m. - 9:20 a.m. ET
Race Broadcast. Live www.world-challenge.com
Saturday, August 12
GT4/GTS Race 1
5:00 p.m. ET
GT/GTA Race 1
3:30 p.m. ET
Sunday, July 30
GT4/GTS Race 2
12:20 p.m. ET
GT/GTA Race 2
2:30 p.m. ET
Race Broadcast. Television. CBS Sports Network
Sunday, August 20
2:30 p.m. ET
Wednesday, August 23
9:00 p.m. ET