Pirelli World Challenge at Barber Motorsports Park this weekend

By: Chris Jameson April 23, 2014 The Pirelli World Challenge is heading to Birmingham, AL to race at Barber Motorsports Park for the first time in series history. This is also the first race on the WC calendar to include the TC, TCA and TCB classes while it is round three for GT, GT-A and GTS. The 2.38 mile, 17 turn Barber Motorsports circuit should offer a challenge and some great racing in every class. A number of the drivers have raced here before in different series, might have a distinct advantage. Mark Wilkins, who previously raced Daytona Prototypes recently commented, “Barber is a great race track… smooth. I think the KIA Racing Optima will really suit the circuit.” With the first race for TC & TCB, we see the addition of the TCA class which is a sub-class of TC that allows the gentleman driver to participate. Gentleman drovers are those who have plenty of racing experience but racing is not their primary occupation. As with GTA, TCA competes for overall position but also scores points in its own championship. TC and TCB also sees the return of PJ Groenke (#66 TCB) to the series plus there are few new Canadians to add to the list of drivers including Karl Thomson, team principal of Compass 360 Racing who will be racing a Honda Civic Si in TC. A complete list of the Canadian entries in all classes is detailed below. With this being round three for GT, GTA and GTS, championship standings are shaping up and there are strong contenders in all three classes. In GT, Anthony Lazzaro is having a strong run in the R. Ferri Motorsport #61 Ferrari 458 and is currently third in the championship. In GTA, Nick Mancuso sits first overall with some great drives in the R. Ferri Motorsport #16 Ferrari 458. In GTS, Mark Wilkins is fith after a slow start at St. Pete’s but a strong drive to the podium (P3) at Long Beach. Pirelli World Challenge action gets underway on Thursday with open practice but officially it all starts on Friday (25th) with practice and qualifying sessions. A complete schedule for World Challenge is listed below. You can follow all the action via live timing and scoring and also watch both Saturday and Sunday races live via World Challenge TV. Links are posted at the end of the story. RaceCanada will also be reporting live from Barber Motorsports Park on Facebook (www.facebook.com/RaceCanada.ca) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/RaceCanada_ca) We hope you will follow along for all the action. Canadian Entries #61 GT – R. Ferri Motorsports Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia (Anthony Lazzaro, Atlanta, GA) Remo Ferri Group – Ferrari of Ontario/Ferrari of Alberta/Maranello Autobody #16 GT-A – R. Ferri Motorsports Ferrari 458 GT3 Italia (Nick Mancuso, Chicago, IL) Ferrari Lake Forest #38 GTS – Kia Racing/Kinetic Motorsports Kia Optima – Mark Wilkins, Toronto, ON Kia Motors America #70 GTS – Compass360 Racing Subaru WRX STi (Ryan Eversley, Atlanta, GA) Children’s Tumor Foundation/Touge Tuning/Racing4Research.org #71 TC – Compass360 Racing Honda Civic Si – Michael DiMeo, Toronto, ON ENJ Excavating/Formcrete/HPD #72 TC – Compass360 Racing Honda Civic Si – Karl Thomson (R) Toronto, ON Children’s Tumor Foundation/HPD/Racing4Research.org #12 TCB – Garrett Racing Program/Drive4Diabetes.com Honda Fit – Johan Schwartz, Ontario, Canada ADA/Animas/American Honda #57 TCB – Racing.ca Mini Cooper – Andrei Kisel (R) N. Vancouver, BC Racing.ca/LaptopScreen.com #66 TCB – Shea Racing Honda Fit – PJ Groenke, Toronto, Ontario Verax.ca/TundraTech/MulliganGold

P.J Groenke joins Shea Racing in PWC TCB

Orlando, FL (April 17, 2014) – The Shea Racing team announced today their driver lineup for the 2014 Pirelli World Challenge season including returning drivers Shea Holbrook and P.J. Groenke along with newcomer, Paul Holton. The 2014 season marks the team’s fifth consecutive year and the 25th Anniversary Season of the Pirelli World Challenge. P.J. Groenke of Toronto, Canada, and Paul Holton of Tallahassee, Florida will contest full seasons in the teams Honda Fits in the Touring Car B-Spec (TCB) category. Shea Holbrook of Orlando, Florida will pilot the teams Honda Civic Si entered in the new formatted class, Touring Car A (TCA). Groenke finished last season with a top-ten finish in the TCB championship and a podium at the Houston Grand Prix season closer. “I’m looking forward to carrying the momentum of our amazing podium finish in the final race of 2013 through the entire 2014 season. I am very fortunate and thankful to have an amazing group of sponsors supporting me in my second season of Pirelli World Challenge racing and the entire team will be working very hard to achieve even greater results this year,” said Groenke. Groenke returns in the No. 66 Verax.ca, Tundra Technical Solutions, Mulligan Gold, Honda Fit.

James Vance Joins Compass360 Racing

STOUFFVILLE, Ontario (April 3, 2014) -James Vance will join forces with Compass360 Racing to continue his rookie season in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge in 2014. Vance, 21, joins the team immediately, with their first race together May 2-3 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif. Vance and teammate Jon Miller will share the No. 74 Honda Civic Si fielded by C360R in the Sport Tuner (ST) class. Toronto-based C360R offered Vance the dual advantages of a championship-winning team located near his Ontario home. C360R has won series championships in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010, the World Challenge Touring Car series in 2011, 2012 and 2013, and the Canadian Touring Car Championship in 2010. “I am extremely excited to get to work at Laguna Seca,” Vance said. “Especially as I have been quick each time I have been there in the past. Signing with C360R and being able to work with such an experienced team with a winning pedigree is definitely an honor. “With my hometown being Toronto, it comes hand in hand as C360R is also based out of Toronto. I am looking forward to getting to work with my teammate Jon Miller, and I am anticipating a successful season with this amazing team!” Vance competed in the ST class in the first two races of the season, in January at Daytona International Speedway and in March at Sebring International Raceway. “After the first two rounds being a bit of a roller coaster for me, as well as Jon, I think it is going to be imperative for us to just finish races and consistently score points for this long championship road,” Vance said. C360R Team Principal Karl Thomson is thrilled to welcome the talented Vance to his team and is confident the tandem of Vance and Miller will be successful. “James impressed us with his performances in the first two races of this Continental Tire season,” Thomson said. “We feel he’ll make an excellent partner to Jon Miller in our No. 74 Honda Civic Si. As an added bonus, he’s based in Toronto, not far from our shop, so I expect he’ll be able to work very closely with our crew over the coming season.” Vance also will bring his sponsors, Bionic Environments Inc. of North America and ExpoSystems USA, to C360R and its No. 74 Honda Civic Si. The continued support of those sponsors has enabled Vance to make a seamless transition to the new team. Source: James Vance PR

James Hinchcliffe finishes in 19th at Firestone Grand Prix

Official Results
The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg
Pos. Car # Driver Laps Running / Reason Out
1 12 Will Power 110 Running
2 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay 110 Running
3 3 Helio Castroneves 110 Running
4 9 Scott Dixon 110 Running
5 77 Simon Pagenaud 110 Running
6 10 Tony Kanaan 110 Running
7 14 Takuma Sato 110 Running
8 19 Justin Wilson 110 Running
9 67 Josef Newgarden 110 Running
10 8 Ryan Briscoe 110 Running
11 17 Sebastian Saavedra 110 Running
12 7 Mikhail Aleshin (R) 110 Running
13 11 Sebastien Bourdais 110 Running
14 15 Graham Rahal 110 Running
15 2 Juan Pablo Montoya 110 Running
16 20 Mike Conway 110 Running
17 34 Carlos Munoz (R) 110 Running
18 18 Carlos Huertas (R) 110 Running
19 27 James Hinchcliffe 109 Running
20 83 Charlie Kimball 108 Running
21 98 Jack Hawksworth (R) 83 Contact
22 25 Marco Andretti 82 Contact

Hinchcliffe Qualifies 19th in St Pete’s Indy Race

Qualification Results
The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg
Pos. Car Driver Time Speed Round
1 14 Takuma Sato 1:01.8686 104.738 Firestone Fast Six
2 10 Tony Kanaan 1:02.1637 104.241 Firestone Fast Six
3 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay 1:02.2167 104.152 Firestone Fast Six
4 12 Will Power 1:02.3955 103.854 Firestone Fast Six
5 9 Scott Dixon 1:02.4454 103.771 Firestone Fast Six
6 25 Marco Andretti 1:02.9595 102.923 Firestone Fast Six
7 34 Carlos Munoz (R) 1:03.3955 102.214 Round 2 / Top 12
8 98 Jack Hawksworth (R) 1:03.5738 101.929 Round 2 / Top 12
9 8 Ryan Briscoe 1:03.6206 101.854 Round 2 / Top 12
10 3 Helio Castroneves 1:03.6635 101.785 Round 2 / Top 12
11 17 Sebastian Saavedra 1:03.8374 101.508 Round 2 / Top 12
12 20 Mike Conway 1:03.9618 101.310 Round 2 / Top 12
13 11 Sebastien Bourdais 1:15.8337 85.450 Qual / Group 1
14 77 Simon Pagenaud 1:12.3741 89.535 Qual / Group 2
15 7 Mikail Aleshin (R) 1:15.9111 85.363 Qual / Group 1
16 19 Justin Wilson 1:12.5890 89.270 Qual / Group 2
17 18 Carlos Huertas (R) 1:16.8105 84.363 Qual / Group 1
18 2 Juan Pablo Montoya 1:12.6994 89.134 Qual / Group 2
19 27 James Hinchcliffe 2.34.4862 41.945 Qual / Group 1
20 83 Charlie Kimball 1:13.0048 88.761 Qual / Group 2
21 15 Graham Rahal No Time No Speed Qual / Group 1
22 67 Josef Newgarden 1:13.1170 88.625 Qual / Group 2