World Challenge: Ryan Eversley joins Acura, RealTime Racing

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Acura Motorsports team RealTime Racing will field a second Acura TLX GT for driver Ryan Eversley in the 2015 Pirelli World Challenge championship.

The 30-year-old Georgia resident will drive the No. 43 RealTime Acura alongside team owner/driver and seven-time PWC champion Peter Cunningham in the No. 42.

Eversley has been a fixture in IMSA’s Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge division, where he’s coming off a three-win 2014 campaign for Compass360 Racing (Honda Civic Si). He also finished second in the CTSCC’s Street Tuner class standings in the 2011 and 2013 seasons.

“To say I’m excited to be joining Acura Motorsports RealTime Racing and the TLX program is a massive understatement,” Eversley said in a release. “It’s every driver’s dream to be associated with a manufacturer, and since I’ve worked alongside Honda Performance Development for the last five years, I feel like it’s a natural progression in our relationship.

“We have a huge undertaking ahead of us, but after testing a few weeks ago, I can’t think of a better team to handle the challenge. I’m extremely grateful to HPD for all they’ve done for me, and look forward to more success with them.”

Eversley later tweeted:

As for Cunningham, he’s looking forward to getting the new TLX prepared for a full-season run in 2015 after the car made a partial debut this past year.

“The Pirelli World Challenge has a lot of strong competitors in GT, but the TLX is the only all-wheel-drive car in the category,” he said in his own thoughts. “For our four-door sedan to be racing head-to-head with the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini, among others, is pretty cool.

“After our two initial outings in 2014, we’ve already learned a great deal and we will continue to improve the car during the off-season. When the 2015 season begins, we’ll be ready to go, and we’re already looking forward to the first race, at the Circuit of the Americas, in March.”

Lewis Hamilton receives Daytona 500 invitation from Bubba Wallace

Lewis Hamilton Bubba Wallace
Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images
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Lewis Hamilton is a fan of the new NASCAR Cup Series team formed by Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan to field a car for Bubba Wallace.

Will the six-time Formula One champion also be a fan in person at a NASCAR race in the near future?

Wallace is hoping so.

After Hamilton tweeted his support Tuesday morning about the news of a Hamlin-Jordan-Wallace team making its debut with the 2021 season, Wallace responded with a sly invitation to the Daytona 500.

Much would need to be worked out, starting with how much garage and grandstand access would be afforded for a 2021 season opener that likely would occur during a still ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

But it would seem fitting given that Hamilton and Wallace have been two of the world’s most outspoken Black athletes about the quest for diversity and racial justice. Hamilton recently reaffirmed his commitment to activism after his donning a Breonna Taylor shirt sparked an FIA inquiry. Time just published a brief piece by Wallace saluting Hamilton as a trailblazer.

The idea of Hamilton attending the NASCAR season opener already had legs, too. The Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 driver has expressed a desire to race the Daytona 500 after he has retired from Formula One.

He was a spectator (with racing legend Mario Andretti) at four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s final Cup race as a full-time in the 2015 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2011, Hamilton swapped cars with three-time champion Tony Stewart at Watkins Glen International.

Having rubbed shoulders with other racing greats so often, it would seem right for Hamilton — who is one victory from tying Michael Schumacher’s career record and also could tie the F1 record with a seventh championship this season — to spend some time with the greatest basketball player of all time.

Jeff Gordon was flanked by Mario Andretti and Lewis Hamilton before the 2015 Cup season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images).