March 20, 2015
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and Porsche Motorsport North America today announced a multi-year extension of their partnership to conduct the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama through the 2017 season.
The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama enters its 11th season in 2015 as one of the largest of Porsche's 20 single-make Cup Challenge series in the world. The IMSA-sanctioned series produces intense, exciting competition for semi-professional and aspiring professional drivers in the world's most produced race car, the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
"We have enjoyed a productive, positive and very successful partnership with Porsche for this series and will proudly build upon that through 2017," IMSA President and Chief Operating Officer Scott Atherton said. "The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama has consistently provided a strong entry point in IMSA competition for young, career-minded GT drivers - with many advancing over the years to the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. The championship also provides an exciting platform for seasoned drivers who want to improve their skills in a professional environment with great competition in a truly iconic car."
The 2015 season starts March 18-20 at Sebring International Raceway. The championship then will visit seven other prestigious venues throughout North America, with two 45-minute rounds at each event, comprising a 16-round schedule.
Racing is divided into two classes - Platinum Cup, featuring the 2014 and 2015 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car, which is based on the seventh, and current, generation of the street car, and Gold Cup, which is comprised of the previous iteration (model years 2010-2013) of the race car. A Masters Championship also is conducted in Platinum and Gold classes. Each class is recognized with its own podium awards ceremony at the end of every race and individual champions at the end of every season.
"Extending our partnership with IMSA is testimony to the true nature of Porsche," said Jens Walther, president and CEO of Porsche Motorsport North America. "We believe in long-term, mutually beneficial relationships. The affiliation we have forged with IMSA has helped make the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama an integral element of the Porsche one-make Cup lineup of more than 20 Cups worldwide. It has become a remarkable development tool for both experienced and young drivers and teams. That has come through the long-term vision of IMSA, their corporate partners, such as Yokohama, and the teams that have long been the foundation of the series. Without all of them, especially our drivers, this series would not be possible."
Two recent champions from the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama have advanced to top-level GT competition in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and global GT racing.
2012 Platinum Cup champion Sean Johnston raced in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup in 2013 and 2014, while 2013 Platinum Cup champion Madison Snow is a standout competitor in the GT Daytona class of the TUDOR Championship, co-driving to a third-place GTD finish in the 2015 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
The International Motor Sports Association, LLC (IMSA) was originally founded in 1969 with a long and rich history in sports car racing. Today, IMSA is the sanctioning body of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, the premier sports car racing series in North America. IMSA also sanctions the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge and the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda, as well as four single-make series: Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama; Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Michelin; Ferrari Challenge North America; and Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America. IMSA - a company within the NASCAR Holdings group - is the exclusive strategic partner in North America with the Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) which operates the 24 Hours of Le Mans as a part of the FIA World Endurance Championship. The partnership enables selected TUDOR Championship competitors to earn automatic entries into the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. For more information visit http://www.IMSA.com and follow IMSA at www.Facebook.com/IMSA and Twitter: @IMSA.
About Porsche Motorsport North America
Porsche Motorsport North America (PMNA), located in Santa Ana, California, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Porsche AG and the sole sales and service provider for the German sports car maker's North American customer sports programs. Porsche is the largest manufacturer of race cars with a wide range of products from the 911 GT3 Cup car to the ultimate 911 RSR. PMNA sells these models to customer teams in North America and provides them with parts, service and expertise in between races and at the track. The PMNA service truck is a fixture at most race tracks in the U.S. and Canada, staffed by factory engineers to service all of Porsche's customer teams.
About Porsche Cars North America
Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (PCNA), based in Atlanta, Ga. is the exclusive U.S. importer of Porsche sports cars, including the Macan and Cayenne SUVs and the Panamera sports sedan. Established in 1984, it is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Porsche AG, which is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, and employs approximately 270 people who provide parts, service, marketing and training for 189 dealers. They, in turn, work to provide Porsche customers with a best-in-class experience that is in keeping with the brand's 66-year history and leadership in the advancement of vehicle performance, safety, and efficiency.
At the core of this success is Porsche's proud racing heritage that boasts some 30,000-plus motorsport wins to date.
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