The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama series is fresh off its first doubleheader of the year at Road America just three weeks ago and embarks on its second this weekend at VIRginia International Raceway as part of the Michelin GT Challenge weekend.
A total of 17 entries between the Platinum Cup class, for current-generation Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars and Gold Cup, for models built between 2014 and 2016, are expected this weekend for Rounds 3 and 4. The first race goes green on Saturday, Aug. 22 at 5:10 p.m. ET after the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship event. Race 2 is scheduled for Sunday at 11:45 a.m.
Both races can be streamed live on IMSA.com/TVLive with IMSA Radio commentary covering each session throughout the weekend on IMSARadio.com.
Here’s a closer look at the GT3 Cup Challenge USA entry list for VIR:
- Following the first two rounds at Road America, it’s a deadlock atop the Platinum Cup standings. Jeff Kingsley and Riley Dickinson are tied with 67 points apiece after both drivers collected first- and second-place finishes during the weekend. With Kingsley winning Race 1 in the No. 16 Kelly-Moss Road and Race Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car, he is technically first in the championship. Regardless, and exciting battle is already shaping up between him and Dickinson’s No. 53 Moorespeed Porsche at VIR.
- Recent history has shown the winner of Race 1 at VIR is going to be the best bet to win Race 2. Since 2016 with Jesse Lazare, the GT3 Cup Challenge USA races at VIR have been swept overall by a single driver. In 2017, Sebastian Landy claimed both victories, while Zacharie Robichon followed suit in 2018. Maxwell Root collected both trophies in 2019. None of those drivers are in this weekend’s field, so it’ll be a fresh face in victory lane for 2020.
- While new to GT3 Cup Challenge USA starting at VIR, Brian Henderson first joined the IMSA ranks last year as a rookie in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge TCR class. This year, he’ll be swapping his Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic TCR for the No. 77 JDX Racing Porsche. VIR might be the best place to make his introduction as he lists Fredericksburg, Virginia as his hometown.
- There are a couple other Virginians in the field besides Henderson. From Chesterfield, it’s Vernon McClure in the No. 10 Porsche for TPC Racing. Charlie Luck, meanwhile, hails from Richmond and will be behind the wheel of the colorful No. 45 Wright Motorsports Porsche. Both cities are around two-and-a-half hours from where they’ll be racing this weekend.
- Following the withdrawal of Kurt Fazekas midway through Road America after an incident, Gold Cup now features four entries at VIR. Only nine points separate the four drivers, with Curt Swearingin leading the way in his No. 17 ACI Motorsports Porsche after finishing second in the first round of the season and winning the second. Efrin Castro – winner of Race 1 at Road America – Bart Collins and Richard Edge, respectively, trail Swearingin in the standings.