Atlanta - The SRO Motorsports Group America race weekend at VIR marks the return of both the GT World Challenge America Presented by AWS and the Pirelli GT4 America series to competition for the first time in more than four months. The only previous race weekend in the series for 2020 was the March 6 – 8 events at Circuit of The Americas (COTA) in Texas.
Three Mercedes-AMG GT3 teams will compete at VIR in the weekend’s featured GT World Challenge America Saturday and Sunday doubleheader.
In March’s COTA opener, George Kurtz and Colin Braun co-drove the No. 04 DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 to a pair of third place overall and second-place Pro-Am class finishes in each of the weekend’s 90-minute races.
The strong results have Kurtz and Braun second in the GT Pro-Am driver championship standings as the series returns to action with live coverage of Sunday's race on the CBS Sports Network (CBSSN). Coverage begins at 1 p.m. EDT on Sunday, July 12.
Last year’s DXDT double podium at VIR started with a third-place Pro-Am finish in Saturday’s first race by David Askew and Ryan Dalziel co-driving the No. 63 DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. The next day, Kurtz and Braun brought the No. 04 across the finish line second in Pro-Am.
The third Mercedes-AMG GT3 entry set for VIR is from Winward Racing, which debuted in the top-tier GT World Challenge division at COTA. Full-season driver Russell Ward shares the No. 33 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 at VIR with Kris Wilson, a one-race substitute for Bryce Ward, the regular full-season co-driver and Russell Ward’s father.
David Askew, Driver – No. 63 DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3: “DXDT is ready to go racing at VIR next week! It's been a long time since our last race at COTA in March, and it's been difficult for many of our crew and their families. It's the nature of our sport that many personnel split their time across different series. They are not full-time with any one team, and as such need to be at the track to make a living. For them it's been tough, although we've tried to stay busy with testing and mechanical work. So far, our team has weathered the storm. We've been working hard on the equipment and with the crew and we are ready. George Kurtz and Colin Brawn had a great weekend at COTA and DXDT looks to continue where we left off. Yes, VIR has been strong for the Mercedes-AMG GT3, but the last couple years we've had glitches that have taken us out and cost us podiums. We had a great test at VIR less than a month ago and we were pleased with the pace.”
Ryan Dalziel, Driver – No. 63 DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3: “To say it has been a difficult few month for everyone globally would be an understatement. So, first and foremost, I am hoping that everyone continues to be safe and take this pandemic seriously and listen to guidelines and follow other precautions. My hope is that getting back to racing can give many people something to smile about and enjoy some live competition again. From my side, I can’t wait to get back into the DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 and restart the season. Seems like forever since COTA. Thankfully, we managed to get some practice in over the last few weeks and shake off the cobwebs before heading to VIR. It’s a great track for the Mercedes-AMG GT3, I have managed to score a couple of wins there in the past, so hopefully David and I can repeat that success in 2020.”
Colin Braun, Driver – No. 04 DXDT Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3: “I am extremely excited to get back to the racetrack, as I know all of us in the racing world are. We are certainly hoping to provide some entertainment and excitement for all in this extremely tough time. George and I had a great result at COTA, we took away a lot of positives with the updated Mercedes-AMG GT3, and we certainly have used this off time to do some homework on our end and continue to push on improving. We had a good result as a team last year in VIR, and I am hoping the momentum from COTA will continue to build for VIR and the rest of the year. The entire DXDT Racing team has been working during this time and I know we are ready to go for one of my favorite tracks in the U.S.!”
Kris Wilson, Driver – No. 33 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 and No. 16 Rearden Racing Mercedes-AMG GT4: “I know everyone is going through tough times right now so I’m looking forward to getting back to some sort of normalcy by returning to the racetrack. I’m really excited to be going to the SRO Motorsports Group America event at VIR next weekend. It’s going to be a busy weekend with two new teams for me this year. I’m back with my teammate John Allen from last year in his new Mercedes-AMG GT4 but with a new team for us with Rearden Racing. We have been doing some testing with the team to understand how everyone communicates and works together and it’s going great. I’m also back to Winward Racing for the VIR weekend, a team that I raced with a couple of years ago. They are stepping up to GT3 competition this year with the Mercedes-AMG GT3 machine. This will be my first-time teaming with Russell Ward, so I’m stoked to see how this new relationship will develop. It will be a busy few days running five races between the two cars on one weekend!”