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PWC News Notebook

A round up of all the major announcments from the past two weeks

TruSpeed AutoSport to make PWC return

Former championship-winning team TruSpeed AutoSport is set to return to PWC in 2018, with a pair of Audi R8 LMS GT3s (featured).

“It is awesome to finally be able to announce our participation in the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge,” explained Tyler Tadevic, owner of TruSpeed AutoSport. “We have been hard at work for the past three months securing equipment and the proper personnel to put together a winning program from the very first event onwards.

“We will house a pair of former Stevenson Racing Audi R8 GT3 machines and compete in the PWC Sprint and SprintX programs in 2018.”

Tadevic continued, “It is an honor to continue on with the equipment that was meticulously maintained by Stevenson Racing and we look forward to taking it back to the top. We have huge goals for 2018 and cannot wait to announce more details about our program.”

As former GT champions, the TruSpeed AutoSport brand will return to GT competition in 2018 under the watchful eye of founder and former owner Rob Morgan. Morgan will rejoin his former program in a management role as he looks to take new drivers and new equipment to the top yet again.

The team has also announced its two drivers for the programme: series veteran Ryan Dalziel and up and comer Parker Chase.

DXDT Unveils AMG GT4

Utah-based team DXDT Racing has just unveiled and tested the brand new Mercedes-AMG GT4, which it will run in PWC next year.

“This is a significant milestone for DXDT Racing,” said team principal David Askew. “We are building a long term relationship with the manufacturer to bring new customers to experience the dynamic roll out with AMG for potentially a GT4 & GT3 competitive platform at PWC.”

The former championship-winning Lamborghini Super Trofeo series team rolled out a new competitive platform with AMG for inviting gentlemen drivers to acquire a seat for a single race or an entire season.

Flying Lizard switches to Audi

Flying Lizard Motorsports will return to the Pirelli World Challenge in 2018 for its second season of competition in the GTS class. For the first time since 2014, the team will field two full season Audi R8 LMS GT4 entries, driven by Mike Hedlund and Adam Merzon. Ryan Eversley will join Merzon in the Case-it Racing by Flying Lizard Motorsports entry for the five SprintX race weekends.

“I’m looking forward to the potential that racing with Audi Sport customer racing will provide for us,” said Program Manager Darren Law. “With so many new cars coming in to GT4 this year, we had to take a hard look at everyone and evaluate the performance and program each of them to provide our team the best opportunity for success.

“Audi always delivers an extremely competitive car and they are focused on the performance. We were very impressed after a review of the new R8 LMS GT4 and having previously had a relationship with Audi Sport customer Racing, this was an obvious choice.”

Flying Lizard Motorsports first raced the Audi R8 LMS in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, finishing second at the team’s first race of the season, the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The California squad has a winning history with the Audi R8 LMS, clinching overall victory at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill in 2015, 2016, and 2017.

The team will retain the same crew from 2017, bringing with them existing knowledge of and experience with the Audi R8 LMS.

“Our relationship with Flying Lizard Motorsports was launched in 2014 and they have been extremely successful with Audi since the beginning,” said Tristan Herbert, Audi, Senior Manager, Motorsport & Customer Racing. “Most recently, they won the 25 Hours of Thunderhill for the third year in a row. This team knows the Audi brand and how to win. We are delighted to have them represent Audi Sport customer racing with a two-car Audi R8 LMS GT4 program.”

Flying Lizard will take delivery of the new cars in February and will immediately get to work to make them race-ready in anticipation of the season opener in March.

Aschenbach to defend title in 2018

Lawson Aschenbach, winner of the 2017 PWC GTS title, is set to return to the series to defend his title with his Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro in 2018.

“The GTS division is so competitive with such a wide range of cars,” said Aschenbach, whose Blackdog Speed Shop Camaro completed every lap of every race in 2017. “Now finishing every race with 12 podiums is a tremendous record. We won the title by over 60 points and that’s a credit to everyone involved. Blackdog is a great team. So, winning the championship in a car that was still in the development stages is a strong statement. We felt this car was developed for a wide range of drivers too – from amateur to pro.

“The GT4 class is really expanding worldwide right now as I think the category is appealing to the car manufacturers,” said Lawson. “The cars look similar to what are sold in the showroom. And the costs are more affordable than some of the other classes. I think you’ll see more GT4 cars coming into PWC this year too.

“Our Blackdog Speed Shop will be ready for another hard fight in 2018,” said Aschenbach. “We have more data entering this year than last year. But the competition level has increased too. It should be a great shootout throughout the 2018 season. I can’t wait to get started.”

2018 campaign set for KPR McLaren

KPR Racing announced today that its racing team will field its McLaren 570S GT4 for driver Mark Klenin in the GTSA division in the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge road racing series.

Klenin, entering his seventh season with PWC, comes to the 2018 campaign in the potent McLaren 570S with a new Canadian-based crew with vast GTS experience. Jackson Stewart also will return as team manager for KPR Racing.

In 2017, Klenin scored a class win at Lime Rock Park last month as well as numerous podium finishes while placing third in the final GTSA point standings.

“We are very excited to return to the Pirelli World Challenge with our McLaren 570S and our new partner, Premiere Copier,” said Klenin, the California native now residing in Lone Tree, Colo. “We won one race and finished on the podium several times. Now, we have revamped our McLaren operation with a solid crew. We now expect to challenge for the GTSA title in 2018.”

The 2018 Pirelli World Challenge season opens on March 9-11 in the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla., with GT and GTS division in action.