- Can K-PAX Racing reclaim their top-spot on the podium?
- Pro-Am remains the most populous class
- The Am field welcomes GMG Racing
- Entry List | Tickets | Timetable
Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin - The Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS championship returns to the Midwest’s own Road America for a weekend packed full of sports car racing action August 19-21. Between its high-commitment left and right-handers, long straightaways, and treacherously tricky kinks and bends, this long, 4.048-mile track has it all. Before the green flag waves for Race 1 on Saturday August 20th, there will be just six events remaining in the 2022 calendar with many teams still in solid contention for the season championships across both the Pro and Pro-Am classes.
The Pro field will feature both the #1 and #3 K-PAX Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 machines driven by drivers championship leader Andrea Caldarelli, along with his K-PAX teammates Jordan Pepper, Michele Beretta, and Misha Goikhberg.
Due to a driver line-up change after the season opener, Caldarelli has 180 points followed by Pepper with 133, Beretta at 130, and Goikhberg at 113. Splitting the team is the # 6 US Racetronics Mercedes-AMG duo of Steven Aghakani and Loris Spinelli at 115.
The K-PAX Racing powerhouse swept the first six races of the season including a 1-2 at NOLA and five 1-3 finishes. The last two races at Watkins Glen International proved, there are no definites in racing, and instead the #96 Turner Motorsport BMW M4 GT3 of Michael Dinan and Robby Foley grabbed the Saturday win, and the #33 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 of Russell Ward and Philip Ellis claimed win in Race 2 on Sunday.
Watkins Glen gave the Turner boys a massive boost in season points, as well as helped the #6 US Racetronics Mercedes-AMG GT3 (Steven Aghakhani / Loris Spinelli) maintain a solid second place in the team championship after securing a second and fourth-place finish at the Glen.
Watkins Glen and Road America are both classic, high-speed American road courses that favor top-end speed over agility, which means the Mercedes and BMW could yet again be at an advantage over the mid-engine Lamborghini. Still, there are a handful of corners where the Lamborghinis could outmaneuver their front-engined rivals—notably Turns 1, 3, 5, and 6—and for anyone who can hold onto their position after Turn 6, some solid commitment could earn some solid real estate over the rest of the pack.
The #3 K-PAX Racing car claimed the Race 1 victory at Road America in 2021, while the #96 Turner Motorsport BMW grabbed the Race 2 win. This 2022 installment could have anybody in the top podium spot on Saturday and Sunday.
The most populous class in GT World Challenge America has featured a dozen teams spread across seven manufacturers, including Acura, Aston Martin, BMW, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes, and Porsche. The depth of field is superb. Four of the teams have scored a win and seven have managed at least one podium finish.
With three wins, the #4 CrowdStrike with Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3 (George Kurtz / Colin Braun) currently leads in season points. The team has been on the podium in seven of the first eight races and has a 100% finishing record.
In second, the #45 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3-R (991.ii) of Charlie Luck and Jan Heylen isn’t far behind having started the season with a weekend sweep at Sonoma. The team had a rough weekend at NOLA but enters Wisconsin having reached the winners circle again at Watkins Glen. Wright grabbed first and third place finishes at Road America last year and will be looking to repeat their success this year.
Third in points is the #93 Racers Edge Motorsports Acura NSX GT3 driven by Ashton Harrison and Mario Farnbacher. They scored a win at NOLA and racked up three runner-up finishes including the second race at Watkins Glen. A strong performance in Wisconsin could help them leapfrog over Wright in season points, though this will be no easy task.
Local Wisconsin favorites RealTime Racing will certainly be in the mix with their #43 Acura NSX GT3 driven by Erin Vogel and Michael Cooper. These folks grabbed a third place finish in Race 1 at Watkins, and currently have some solid momentum going for them. This will be a sort of homecoming for RealTime after not competing in World Challenge at their home track since 2019.
The #94 BimmerWorld BMW M4 GT3 driven by Chandler Hull and GT racing legend Bill Auberlen is another solid contender. They are chasing their first win after scoring five podium finishes in the first eight races. The Watkins Glen podium was claimed after some truly textbook sports car racing: Hull and Harrison battled lap after lap in the race’s final ten minutes, never losing pace and showing immense skill. This was one of those moments that proved the Fanatec series offers some of the very finest action in professional motorsports.
Triarsi Competizione’s #23 Ferrari 488 GT3 driven by Onofrio Triarsi and Charlie Scardina went unchallenged in the Am class at Watkins Glen, instead leaving them to squabble with the Pro and Pro-Am teams, and proving they have the pace, as they claimed a hearty sixth overall finish in Race 2.
The #61 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GT3 driven by Jean-Claude Saada and Conrad Grunewald is back after some unfortunate luck in Race 1 at VIR, and will definitely be giving their dear Ferrari-piloting rivals a good fight. Triarsi’s got a strong lead in points, but repeat wins by AF Corse could swallow up a big chunk of that gap.
The series welcomes World Challenge veterans GMG Racing into the Am field, who will be sporting the #032 Porsche 911 GT3-R (991.ii) driven by Kyle Washington and James Sofronas. These two will keep Triarsi and AF Corse honest for sure, as they’re no strangers to sports car racing and, with five races left in the 2022 season, could make things very interesting for the Ferraris.
Tickets are now available. The weekend schedule, live timing and scoring, and session reports are available at gt-world-challenge-america.com. Live race streams are available free on YouTube (GTWorld) and Twitch (SROMotorsports).
For more information on the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS social channels on Facebook at @gtworldchallengeamerica, Instagram at @gtworldchallengeamerica and Twitter at @gtworldcham.