Summer Ends as Second Half of 2023 Gets Back Underway
New Entrants Fuel 19 Car Grid
Elkhart Lake, WI - The Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS series is back in action at Road America for the third to final round of racing on the 2023 calendar. Two races, Saturday, Aug. 19, and Sunday, Aug. 20 knock off the dust from summer break with 143 cars joining the event weekend across SRO America’s various championships.
The 4.048-mile, 14-turn course carves around the Wisconsin countryside and is surrounded by campsites within the sprawling facility, including hiking and bike trails, car corrals and a go-kart track along the back straight. Fans will have plenty to see and do with 10 races taking place over the course of three days.
The weekend festivities kick off with the annual GT Parade and Welcome Party on Thursday evening. Series racecars will make the journey from Road America to downtown Elkhart Lake at 5 p.m. for a spectacle on the streets of the Village. Meet the stars and cars of SRO America at Siebkens Resort and enjoy live music, free swag, and Spotted Cow.
The PRO Class receives a new inductee with the No. 45 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R making its debut in the class. Jan Heylen is now paired with Madison Snow because his former teammate, Charlie Luck, is bowing out from driving duties as he recovers from an injury.
Heylen and Snow take on a heated field led by the No. 28 RS1 Porsche 911 GT3 R of Eric Filgueiras and Steven McAleer. While the duo tops the Drivers Points Championship, it isn’t a comfortable spot as the No. 93 Racers Edge Motorsports Acura NSX of Ashton Harrison and Mario Farnbacher is only a race away from assuming the accolade.
The No. 53 MDK Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of Seth Lucas and Trenton Estep are third in the points standings and make for the third Porsche Motorsport representative in the field of 19. The No. 21 Conquest Racing Ferrari 296 GT3 of Manny Franco and Alessandro Balzan chase their first win and share in a fight from a points deficit with the No. 94 BimmerWorld BMW M4 GT3 of Chandler Hull and Bill Auberlen. Hull and Auberlen are in the hunt for a second win.
The PRO-AM Class has a few additional faces with the return of Ziad Gandour and Will Hardeman. Gandour pairs back up with Daniel Morad in the No. 9 TR3 Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3. Hardeman and Adam Carrol also rejoin the series in the No. 19 Esses Racing with Mercedes-Benz of Austin Mercedes-AMG GT3.
GMG Racing returns to the top category as the No. 32 Porsche 911 GT3 R of Kyle Washington and Jerome Bleekemolen join the class. While Washington has been competing under the GT America powered by AWS banner, this is their first run in the Fanatec GT World Challenge America series.
The battles resume for the remainder of the field as well. Adam Adelson and Elliot Skeer come into Road America leading the PRO-AM points standings with their No. 120 Porsche 911 GT3 R for Wright Motorsports. Four points separate George Kurtz and Colin Braun in the No. 04 CrowdStrike by Riley Mercedes-AMG GT3 from the Porsche duo.
Derek DeBoer is in the hunt for his first win of the season with teammate Valentin Hasse-Clot in the No. 007 TRG Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3. In a similar fashion, Samantha Tan and Neil Verhagen in the No. 38 ST Racing BMW M4 GT3 will want to roll their successful debut into another podium finish, ideally one that lands them a win as well.
Pedro Torres and Spencer Pumpelly in the No. 16 ACI Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R continue their push for points as the drivers sit seventh in the points standings. The No. 33 Triarsi Competizione Ferrari 296 GT3 of Justin Wetherill and Ryan Dalziel returns to the track. The team won back-to-back races in the AM Class last year.
DXDT Racing may have the secret sauce to pick up end-of-season steam. Bryan Sellers and Scott Smithson in the No. 08 Mercedes-AMG GT3 finished second in Race Two. They and teammates Jeff Burton and Corey Lewis in the No. 91 Mercedes-AMG GT3 will want to use the blueprint for more success.
Anthony Bartone and teammate Adam Christodoulou in the No. 43 RealTime Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 continue to gain competition experience in the PRO-AM Class. They jumped up in class at VIRginia International Raceway and came close to topping their announcement with a podium finish.
In AM, the No. 77 TR3 Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 of Paul Kiebler and Jon Branam make the step up from GT America powered by AWS and Pirelli GT4 America. They’ll look to get acquainted with their new GT3 machinery and series at the National Park of Speed.
Let’s Go Racing
Join the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS in Road America Aug. 18-20. Tickets, campsites and cabins are still available for purchase. For those watching from home join the half-a-million subscribers on YouTube by subscribing to the GT World page. Converse with other fans while watching the live stream on Twitch hosted by Ash Vandelay.