When developing the Porsche Carrera Cup North America, Porsche Motorsport North America (PMNA) had to address several aspects to set the premier one-make race series apart from what had come before. One such area was the way in which champions for each of the inaugural season’s three classes would be crowned. The sole importer of Porsche race cars in the United States and Canada worked closely with IMSA officials to craft a point system that awarded success, speed and consistency.
The point structure for the Porsche Carrera Cup North America – like all Carrera Cups worldwide – is based on the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup points model. First-place for each round pays 25-points, five points more than second-place. The third-place finisher will bank 17 markers while fourth-place earns 14. A fifth-place finish in any round will pay 12-points, sixth-place will be awarded 10-points. Every position from seventh-place to 15th will drop one point with each successive slot. 16th-place and below are awarded no points.
One area the North American championship departs from the Supercup structure is the awarding of points for qualifying. Pole position winners for every race are gifted an additional five-points for showing expertise and speed in the 30-minute qualifying session. This allows a single driver to – theoretically – earn 60-points over the course of a normal weekend: 25 x 2 for race wins and 5 x 2 for pole position wins.
Championships will be awarded to Drivers in all three classes: Pro, Pro-Am and Pro-Am 991. Regardless of class, a single Entrants Champion will be crowned. Entrants points are distributed in the same amounts and structure as Driver points to only the highest finishing car entered by that team. No pole position points are awarded to Entrants.
After two-rounds, both held at Florida’s Sebring International Raceway in March, Seb Priaulx (United Kingdom) leads Kay van Berlo (Netherlands) by ten-points. Each driver – both of whom compete in the Pro class with the newest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car (type 992) – earned a victory and runner-up finish in the first weekend of competition. Leh Keen (Atlanta, Georgia) and Riley Dickinson (New Braunfels, Texas) hold positions three and four following the first two rounds by virtue of third-place finishes in one of the two, 45-minute races. Parker Thompson (Canada) closes-out the top-five of the Pro class with 26 points.
Alan Metni (Austin, Texas) will travel to his home track, the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) on April 30 – May 2 for Rounds 3 and 4 of the Porsche Carrera Cup North America, with a commanding lead in the Pro-Am class. The Texan scored back-to-back victories at Sebring in the category for drivers 40-years-old and older racing the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. He is 16-points ahead of Thomas Collingwood (Canada), 21-points in front of Tim Pappas (Boston, Massachusetts), 23 beyond Efrin Castro (Dominican Republic) and 24 up on Chattanooga, Tennessee’s Curt Swearingin.
There will be a single Pro-Am 991 champion crowned in the history of the Porsche Carrera Cup North America. The class for previous generation Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars ( type 991.2) will only be campaigned in 2021. Following the first two rounds there is a tie at the top of the leaderboard with Kurt Hunt (Atlanta, Georgia) and Matt Halcome (Dalls, Georgia) holding 45-points apiece after swapping the top two positions in Rounds 1 and 2. Grady Willingham (Birmingham, Alabama) goes to Texas third in points with 31 markers while Jeff Majkrzak (Orono, Minnesota) and Joe Still (Huntsville, Alabama) grasp fourth and fifth-places with 29 and 20 points each.
The Entrants Championship battle reflects the Pro class with the highest-placing team, Kelly-Moss Road & Race, entering the winning and second-place efforts in both rounds. The Madison, Wisconsin-based program fielded both Priaulx and van Berlo guaranteeing the winner’s share of points – 50. 311RS Motorsport (represented by Keen and Ryan Gates) has 37 points as a result of Keen’s Round 1 podium. Team Hardpoint EBM rode Dickinson’s third-place result in Round 2 to 32-points for the weekend, the VIRginia International Raceway-based team also fields Castro. Thompson’s results earned JDX Racing 31-points, good for fourth-place, while Dylan Murry (Athens, Georgia) gave BGB Motorsports – a team he shares with Collingwood – 23 points to hold fifth-place.
Both Rounds 3 and 4 will take place at the Circuit of the Americas on May 2. The weekend, named as a replacement for Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP) following a COVID-related cancelation at that facility, will open for practice on Friday, April 30 with qualifying scheduled for Saturday, May 1.
Porsche Carrera Cup North America is the premier one-make race series in the United States and Canada utilizing a combination of the latest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car, type 992, and MICHELIN® Pilot® Sport Cup N3 racing slick to challenge the best road and street race courses on the continent. As with all national Carrera Cups worldwide, The inaugural season of the championship is scheduled to host 16-rounds at eight venues. Each 45-minute race counts toward a season-long driver and team championship in each of three classes: Pro, Pro-Am and Pro-Am 991.