International Field of the World’s Top GT Drivers Features Four Canadians Seeking Victory on Home Soil
BOWMANVILLE, ONT. – Blancpain GT World Challenge America is set to bring its exciting brand of sportscar racing north of the border as drivers from over 10 nations piloting GT3 machinery from the world’s top marques will take to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park's renowned 3.957-km (2.459-mi.) Grand Prix circuit May 17-19. The field includes four Canadians returning to compete at their home track.
Championship Battles Heating up in Pro
Closing in on the midpoint of the 2019 season, driver and team championship battles are starting to heat up. Leading the team championship heading into the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP) weekend, K-PAX Racing’s No. 3 Bentley Continental GT3 will be piloted by driver championship co-leaders Rodrigo Baptista from Brazil and Maxime Soulet from Belgium – the pair is coming off a thrilling victory in Round 4 at VIR. It was the K-PAX duo's second win of the season after a Round 1 victory at COTA.
Canadian team R. Ferri Motorsport comes into the weekend second in team points and will look to get back into victory circle having last won at COTA in Round 2. Their #61 Ferrari 488 GT3 will be piloted by Spain’s Miguel Molina and Finland’s Toni Vilander; Molina and Vilander sit tied in second in the driver championship coming into the weekend.
K-PAX Racing’s second entry, the #9 Bentley Continental GT3 will be piloted by former series champion Alvaro Parente of Portugal, and his Spanish teammate Andy Soucek. Both drivers sit third in the driver championship and were victorious in Round 3 at VIR.
Vancouver’s Scott Hargrove and teammate American Patrick Long, a two-time series champion, will co-pilot the #58 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R entry. Throughout his career, Hargrove has had numerous wins at CTMP and he’ll be looking to repeat the feat at his home track. Long has also had success at the track including a dominant series performance back in 2016 when he won both weekend races. Wright Motorsports currently sits third in the team championship standings, while the drivers sit fourth in the driver’s championship.
Other Pro competitors to watch include Toronto’s Daniel Morad and American Michael De Quesada in the #22 Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R – Morad won last year’s CTMP Sprint Round 5 race and like his other fellow Canadian drivers competing this weekend has spent hours at the track that is located just east of Toronto. German teammates Wolf Henzler and Marco Holzer will co-pilot the #24 Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R. Alegra Motorsports sits fourth overall in the team championships.
Canadian Duo Leads in Pro/Am
Canadians Martin Barkey and Kyle Marcelli sit atop the Pro/Am Cup driver standings after back-to-back wins in Rounds 2 and 3. Both have considerable experience at CTMP and will co-pilot the #80 Acura NSX entry.
The Pro/Am field also features the American team of George Kurtz and Colin Braun piloting the #04 Mercedes-AMG GT3; the #38 Porsche 911 GT3 R with Americans Kevan Millstein and Alex Barron set to drive; the #43 Acura NSX piloted by Americans Bret Curtis and Dane Cameron; American David Askew paired with Scottish driver Ryan Dalziel in the #63 Mercedes-AMG GT3; and the American/Norwegian pairing of Anthony Imperato and Dennis Olsen co-piloting the #91 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R. Gradient Racing has also entered its #5 Acura NSX GT3 for the weekend with drivers Marc Miller and Till Bechtolsheimer behind the wheel.
The Japanese team of Naoto Takeda and Takuya Shairasaka are the lone Am/Am class entry and will co-drive the #96 BMW F13 M6 GT3.
On-track action begins Thursday, May 16 at 5pm Eastern with the first practice session of the weekend. Round 5’s 90-minute contest is scheduled to go green at 2:10 pm Eastern on Saturday, May 18th, while Round 6 is scheduled to start at 9:55 am Eastern Sunday, May 19th. Both races and qualifying will be streamed live on gt-world-challenge-america.com, with Sunday’s contest airing same-day on CBS Sports Network at 2pm Eastern.
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