World Challenge: Make-up race to be run at season-ending weekend in Utah

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Pirelli World Challenge officials have announced that the rained-out GT/GTS/GT-A race during the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg weekend will be made up during the 2014 season finale weekend in September at Miller Motorsports Park outside Salt Lake City.

The move will make the Utah Grand Prix weekend on Sept. 12-13 a double-race weekend for the GT-based classes in the series.

“We look forward to putting on an even bigger show for fans in the Salt Lake City area,” WC Vision president/CEO Scott Bove said in a statement. “The finale race weekend for our 25th anniversary season will be that much more exciting.”

“We are very happy to add an additional race for the Pirelli World Challenge during the Utah Grand Prix weekend,” said John Larson, GM of MMP’s parent company, Miller Performance USA. “We were looking forward to having them back for the first time in two years, and now we have even more to look forward to.

St. Pete was to be a two-race weekend for the GT-based classes, but a heavy storm that Saturday caused the cancellation of what was to be the first round. The “second” round of the year took place the following day with no interruptions.

The GT-based classes competed this past weekend in a single-race show at Long Beach. If you don’t want to wait until the NBCSN broadcast this Sunday afternoon to see who won, CLICK HERE for a recap.

SMP Racing unveils BR1 LMP1 car in Bahrain ahead of WEC entry

SMP Racing
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SMP Racing has publicly unveiled its new BR1 LMP1 car that will enter the FIA World Endurance Championship from 2018.

SMP Racing opted to pull out of racing full-time in the WEC for 2017 in order to focus on its preparations for an LMP1 entry the following year, with the decision being taken long in advance of Porsche’s exit announcement.

Officials from the Russian-backed SMP Racing, as well as drivers including recent IndyCar racer Mikhail Aleshin (sporting a broken arm in a sling), Vitaly Petrov and Sergey Sirotkin were all on hand to unveil the car on Friday in the Bahrain International Circuit paddock ahead of this weekend’s WEC finale.

The BR Engineering BR1 features a Dallara chassis and an AER engine, and has completed over 2,000 km in private testing, with further running set to be completed in the coming weeks.

SMP Racing plans to field two cars in the WEC’s LMP1 class next year, and is keen to get as many Russian drivers as possible in the seats from its wide pool of talent.

Even with Porsche’s departure from LMP1, the class is set to feature a bigger field thanks to the increased number of privateers moving up, with Toyota set to remain the sole manufacturer in the class.