Grand Prix of Kansas - The Track: 2.37-mile, 6 turn road circuit
Qualifying: Friday, 11:45 p.m. ET
Race: Saturday, 11:15 p.m. ET
Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge
The Place: Kansas Speedway
The Race: Grand Prix of Kansas
The Track: 2.37-mile, 6 turn road circuitThe Date/Time:
Qualifying: Friday, 10:10 p.m. ET
Race: Saturday, 7:15 p.m. ET
Prototype Challenge Class Featured Under The Lights At Kansas
Sports car racing will be in the spotlight in this weekend’s Grand Prix of Kansas, a unique event that will see the Prototype Challenge (PC) class of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge tackle the 2.37-mile Kansas Speedway road circuit.
The PC cars will be joined by the IMSA Cooper Tires Prototype Lites powered by Mazda series for a combined grid of nearly 30 prototypes. The PC cars will run two 45-minute races that will count as one result in the TUDOR Championship point standings. Each race counts separately for Prototype Lites. The first race begins on Saturday at 4:15 p.m. CT, setting the grid for the final race under the lights at 10:15 p.m.
This will be the second sports-car event on the six-turn layout, which uses the speedway’s 1.5-mile oval in addition to an infield section. Last year, Kansas hosted the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, an event won by Wayne Taylor Racing’s Jordan Taylor and Max Angelelli.
This will be the fourth race of the season for the PC class.
Joined by James Gue in the No. 54 CORE autosport ORECA FLM09, Colin Braun and Jon Bennett opened the year with victories in the Rolex 24 At Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida. Starworks Motorsport won the most recent race (at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca), with Mirco Schultis and Renger van der Zande driving the team’s No. 8 ORECA FLM09.
Braun Brings NASCAR Oval Experience to Kansas Speedway
While Colin Braun will be racing for the first time on the 2.37-mile Kansas Speedway road course, he’s got plenty of experience on the venue’s oval. Braun raced in a pair of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events, finishing third in 2008 and sixth in 2009. He also raced in the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series race, finishing 23rd.
Braun and co-driver Jon Bennett currently hold a three-point lead in the PC standings over Renger van der Zande, 97-94.
With a weekend off from racing the No. 1 Tequila Patrón HPD ARX-03b/Honda in the TUDOR Championship Prototype class, Ryan Dalziel will rejoin Starworks Motorsport at Kansas driving the No. 7 Bomberg ORECA FLM09. … Prior to becoming the youngest driver in the history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 16-year-old Matt McMurry will race Prototype Lites Kansas for Performance Tech. … Indianapolis 500 veterans Alex Tagliani and Bruno Junqueira lead RSR Racing’s two-car lineup. Tagliani – who recently finished 13th in his sixth Indy 500 – co-drives the team’s No. 08 with Chris Cumming. Junqueira joins Duncan Ende in the RSR No. 09. … David Ostella and Doug Bielefeld are set for solo duty at Kansas. While the rules specify that each team’s Pro-Am driver must qualify and drive in the opening 45-minute race, teams have an option of using either their amateur or professional driver in the finale. Ostella will drive both rounds in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports entry, while Bielefeld will drive solo in the No. 87 BAR 1 Motorsports ORECA FLM09.
Stevenson Looks For Kansas Repeat In New Camaro Z/28.R
Stevenson Motorsports has both a new car and driver lineup as it seeks its second consecutive Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge victory at Kansas Speedway.
Matt Bell returns from last year’s winning lineup, when he joined John Edwards in the winning Chevrolet Camaro GS.R in the debut race on the 2.37-mile circuit. Stevenson Motorsports returns with a two-car team which fields a pair of Camaro Z/28.Rs. Bell will be joined by Andy Lally in the No. 9, while Robin Liddell and Andrew Davis co-drive the No. 6 that won earlier this year at Sebring, the first victory for the new Camaro.
Last year’s race came down to the wire, with Edwards edging Nick Longhi in the championship-bound No. 13 Rum Bum Racing Porsche 911 at the checkered flag by 0.425 seconds. Shelby Blackstock finished third, co-driving a Ford Mustang Boss 302R with Roush Performance teammate Joey Atterbury, after leading 16 laps down the stretch.
There has been a shakeup in last year’s podium finishers. While the Rum Bum duo have returned – coming off an impressive victory at Lime Rock Park – both Edwards and Blackstock have joined Fall-Line Motorsports this season.
Opening the season with back-to-back runner-up finishes at Daytona and Sebring, Edwards and Trent Hindman won at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in the No. 46 Fall-Line Motorsports BMW M3. The pair finished fourth at Lime Rock Park, and now hold a 25-point lead in the GS standings over TRG-AMR Aston Martin Vantage driver Kris Wilson (127-102).
Blackstock, the son of superstar singer/actor Reba McEntire, won the season opener co-driving Fall-Line’s No. 48 BMW M3.
Another contender that has switched cars is Multimatic Motorsports, now fielding the No. 15 Ford Mustang Boss 302.R for Jade Buford and Scott Maxwell. Buford won the pole for last year’s race in an Aston Martin Vantage, and led three times for a race-high 27 laps. Maxwell was running third when the car lost drive with 22 minutes remaining, ending the team’s championship hopes.
The Continental Tire Challenge will begin practice at 2:45 p.m. CT on Friday, with qualifying set for 9:10 p.m. Saturday’s two-hour, 30-minute race begins at 6:15 p.m.
Freedom Autosport Seeks Fourth Consecutive ST Victory
Freedom Autosport is trying to make it four in a row in the Street Tuner (ST) class at Kansas. Andrew Carbonell and Randy Pobst won back-to-back at Sebring and Mazda Raceway in the team’s No. 25 Mazda MX-5, while Tom Long and Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer won at Lime Rock. While the Lime Rock-winning No. 27 Mazda MX-5 will not be competing at Kansas, brothers Mat and Mark Pombo team in the No. 26 Freedom Autosport Mazda.
CJ Wilson Racing’s Stevan McAleer and Chad McCumbee are enjoying a run of three consecutive podium finishes in the No. 5 Mazda MX-5. The team is owned by Los Angeles of Anaheim lefty C.J. Wilson.
Defending ST champions Mike LaMarra and Terry Borcheller are the top returning drivers in the class at Kansas. Last year, they finished second in the No. 23 Burton Racing BMW 128i. IndyCar Dual in Detroit Post Event Infractions