Rockingham next for Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge
The Rockingham Motor Speedway is the setting for the second event in the 2012 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge GB with two 25-minute races over the weekend of 19/20 May. Boosting the grid will be three drivers making their debut in the series.The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge is managed by Porsche Cars GB alongside the Carrera Cup GB and is growing as the season develops, with steadily building competitor interest. The Rockingham entry is the best yet for the championship and the series has recently received gained championship status for the six-event, 12-race season. The GT3 Cup Challenge is for the cars from 2009 or before, including the 996-model cars from up to 2006.Heading the entry will be the drivers who shared the race wins at Snetterton when the season opened over the Easter weekend. In two exciting races, James Birch (IN2 Racing) and Steven Liquorish (Team Parker Racing) took a win each and they head the entry for Rockingham. Former single-seater racer Birch will surely be strong around the challenge of the Corby track, where the flat out banked Turn One is one of the fastest corners on the schedule. However, with his first Porsche win under his belt with a polished performance at Snetterton, Liquorish will be a big threat.Others with a visit to the podium as a minimum target at Rockingham include Northampton-based racers Peter Smallwood (Parr Motorsport) and Neil Houston (Team Parker Racing), while Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing) showed at Snetterton that he is a real force to be reckoned with. Although former F3 racer Sherwood only made his debut in the series at Snetterton, he was immediately close to the pace.Birmingham-based Irishman John Ferguson was another star at Snetterton in one of the cars entered by Dublin-based Ask Racing. He has the pace to win at Rockingham, while two drivers will make their GT3 Cup debut in Class 1 cars: Guy Riall (Almara Racing) and Mark Flaherty (Redline Racing) will both be welcome additions to the growing grid.Ferguson will be joined in the Ask Racing team by a Class 2 entry for experienced Co Wicklow racer Tom Hallissey. His class rivals will include Mark Cowne (Kruger Cowne) who took a double victory at Snetterton.After qualifying at 11.15 on Saturday, round three will start at 15.15, with round four at 12.05 on Sunday. Both races will be filmed for transmission on the Porsche Origin website and Porsche’s YouTube channel.