Pirelli GT4 Sprint America’s top drivers Ian James, Michael Cooper and Spencer Pumpelly lead a talented 21-car field to upstate New York as the series returns to action August 30 to September 1 at Watkins Glen International. Presented by CrowdStrike, drivers will compete in Rounds 10 and 11 of the 2019 Championship at the picturesque 11-turn, 3.4-mile road course.
Nine Points Separate Pro Division Championship Protagonists James, Cooper and Pumpelly
Team Panoz Racing driver Ian James comes into the weekend leading in the driver’s championship with a slim three-point lead over Blackdog Speed Shop’s Michael Cooper (136-133). James will drive the #50 Panoz Avezzano GT4, while Cooper, a former series TC and GTS champion from Syosset, NY will pilot the #10 McLaren 570S GT4. Cooper won Round 8 at Sonoma with James finishing second on the day. The next day James won with Cooper finishing second. Expect more thrilling, close quarters racing from the two at Watkins Glen.
Only five points behind Cooper with 128 is Spencer Pumpelly – he’ll drive the #66 TRG - The Racers Group Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR. Pumpelly’s efforts have helped place Porsche atop the manufacturer’s championship standings, only two points ahead of Panoz and Mclaren, both tied at 116 points. Pumpelly held the early season lead in the driver’s championship and looks to leapfrog both James and Cooper at Watkins Glen.
Robinson Racing’s Gar Robinson and Shane Lewis sit fourth and fifth respectively in the driver’s championship standings heading into the weekend. Robinson will pilot the #74 Chevrolet Camaro GT4, while Lewis will get behind the wheel of the #72 Chevrolet Camaro GT4.
Promoted to the pro division mid-way through the 2019 season, Jarett Andretti, son of versatile driver John Andretti and nephew to team principal Michael Andretti, is an accomplished driver in his own right – he will pilot the #18 Andretti Autosport McLaren 570S GT4.
Michael McCann Jr. makes his first GT4 Sprint start of 2019 in the #82 McCann Racing Audi R8 LMS GT4.
Staveley Looks to Hold off Gaples and Brynjolfsson in Battle for Am Division Championship
In the Am division, Drew Staveley sits atop the driver’s championship standings and will pilot the #12 Ian Lacy Racing Ford Mustang GT4. Staveley swept the Sonoma weekend with back-to-back wins and has not finished outside the top 3 in seven starts this season. His teammate Frank Gannett will drive the #24 Ford Mustang GT4.
Cooper’s teammate and Blackdog Speed Shop team principle Tony Gaples sits third in the driver’s championship standings and will pilot the #11 McLaren 570S GT4.
Sitting just behind Gaples in the standings is Park Place Motorsports’ Alan Brynjolfsson – he’ll drive the #7 Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR. Brynjolfsson won Round 1 at the Circuit of the Americas and needs to get back into victory circle to renew his championship quest. Marko Radisic sits fifth in the standings and will drive the #22 Precision Driving Tech BMW M4 GT4. KPR brings the #62 McLaren 570S GT4 for Mark Klenin.
Series veterans GMG Racing bring their #2 Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR for Jason Bell, while Sean Quinlan will pilot the #19 Stephen Cameron Racing BMW M4 GT4. Rearden Racing’s Jeff Burton will drive the #91 Audi R8 LMS GT4.
Thomas Collingwood will pilot the #169 BGB Motorsports Group Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR. Another series veteran, Jeff Courtney, returns to the GT4 competition and will drive the #99 JCR Motorsports Maserati Grand Turismo MC GT4. Rounding out the Am division is Aristotle Balogh in the #190 Stephen Cameron Racing BMW M4 GT4, Michael Dinan in the #210 Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche 718 Cayman CS MR, and Kevan Millstein in the #83 K2R Motorsports Porsche Cayman GT4 CS-MR.
Over 100 cars will be competing over the weekend in SRO’s three series – Blancpain GT World Challenge America, Pirelli GT4 America and TC America. GT4 America Sprint drivers get their first official track time starting with practice #1 on Friday, August 30 at 9:40 am EST. Qualifying begins Saturday, August 31 at 9:10 am EST, with the first Sprint race set for a green flag start later that day at 2:05 pm EST.All Sprint races will be streamed live on gt4-america.com and via audio simulcast on SiriusXM satellite radio Ch. 385 (980 on the web stream). CBS Sports Network coverage for Sprint races at Watkins Glen airs September 8 at 1pm EST. Check your local listings for additional broadcast time and channel information.
Official Timetable - PDF LINK
Entry List - PDF LINK