When the SRO GT World Challenge America takes to the VIRginia International Raceway (VIR) asphalt on July 9 – 12, the return of North American sports car racing will be complete. Just as it did in IMSA, Porsche and its privateer customer teams will play a major role in the nine races – ranging from 50 to 90-minutes in length – scheduled for the Alton, Virginia-area track. Four major series with Porsche eligible entries are scheduled to run on the 3.26-mile, 18-turn natural terrain road course: the GT World Challenge America (Porsche 911 GT3 R), GT Sports Club (Porsche 911 Gt2 RS Clubsport and Porsche 935-19), GT4 America Sprint and GT4 America SprintX (in which both the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport can participate). Leading the contingent of Porsche-built race cars will be the teams and driver combinations that won their respective class races at the season-opening round at the Circuit of the Americas.
Three Porsche 911 GT3 R race cars made an impact at the only SRO GT World Challenge America weekend held prior to the lockdown to limit the spread of COVID-19. Each of the GT3-specification machines earned at least one podium finish at COTA. But it was the No. 20 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of rookie GT3-spec drivers (San Antonio, Texas) and Max Root (San Diego, California) that celebrated twin victories in the AM class. California-based GMG Racing had the best overall result of the GT weekend when James Sofronas (Villa Park, California) and Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands) took top-honors in the Pro/Am class with the No. 14 Porsche 911 GT3 R in the season opening race from pole position.
The COTA season-opener was a perfect weekend for the No. 47 NOLASPORT Pro/Am class entry of Texan’s Matt Travis and Jason Hart as well as their Amateur (AM) class teammates, Zac Anderson and Sean Gibbons in the No.7 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport. The New Orleans, Louisiana-based race team swept every class in every GT4 race held in March. They return with the target to continue that performance in the three GT4 Sprint races (50-minutes) and three GT4 SprintX (60-minutes) races.
Testing for the weekend will start on Wednesday, July 8 for the GT4 classes. Testing for the higher-performance GT2-spec GT Sport Club (GTSC) and GT3-spec “GT” classes opens on Thursday, July 9. Thursday will see official practice for the GT4 classes as well. Qualifying and Race 1 for the GT4 American Sprint X and shorter Sprint championship will be held on Friday, July 10 with the GT World Challenge America and GTSC official practice getting underway Friday morning. Qualifying and Race 1 for the GT World Challenge America and GTSC will take place on Saturday, July 11. The final events of the weekend – including make-up events for the canceled Long Beach Grand Prix – will be raced on Sunday for the GT4 Sprint and SprintX series. Race 2 for the GT and GTSC will also take place on Sunday, July 12.