Parker Chase's Ginetta GT4. Photo: PWC

PWC reveals new GTS rules, with GT4-spec the future direction

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GT4-spec cars have made their way into the Pirelli World Challenge GTS class this year and over the next two years, the class is expected evolve solely into the GT4 platform.

SRO founder Stephane Ratel, who joined WC Vision’s Board of Directors at Long Beach, told NBC Sports at Long Beach he could see GTS moving to a solely GT4 platform, which this release confirms.

Here’s the full release from the series:

Coming off another exciting Pirelli World Challenge GTS race weekend at Barber Motorsports Park, WC Vision LLC, producers of the Pirelli World Challenge, today announced the series’ future plans for the Grand Touring Sedan class.

In 2017, the GTS category will include all applicable SRO-homologated GT4 cars and the Pirelli World Challenge series will grandfather in current 2016 GTS classified vehicles. Full SRO GT4 compliance is expected for the PWC series in 2018.

In 2016, the GTS division has already enlisted ten different auto manufacturers competing in the first six rounds and four of the auto makers have reached victory lane. The ten models include Chevrolet Camaro Z-28, KTM XBow GT4, Ford Boss 302, SIN Car R1 GT4, Ginetta GT4, Lotus Evora GT4, Aston Martin Vantage GT4, Maserati Gran Turismo MC, Audi TT RS and Porsche Cayman.

“The PWC series was the first in this country to adopt the global GT3 platform with our Competition Director Marcus Haselgrove leading that charge,” said Greg Gill, WC Vision President and CEO. “Now, as the series reviewed the data from its first six rounds of GTS racing, we are ready to confirm the full addition of GT4 to GTS in 2017, with a year transition time for adoption of the SRO GT4 homologation globally by 2018. We anticipate hearing about more OEM entries into the GTS class in the coming weeks. This is a very exciting time for GTS racing and its drivers, teams and sponsors. We see a great future for GTS.”

Beginning in the third and fourth quarters of 2015, the Pirelli World Challenge established a testing program for GT4 cars as the North American GT production series worked closely with the SRO, the series’ technical partner, to examine GT4 cars homologated by the worldwide sports car organization.

“The PWC series supported the homologated GT3 concept in North America, attracting many new manufacturers,” said Haselgrove, “The goal in the competition department has been to assist all manufacturers with their motorsport ladder systems. I proposed in January, 2015 that GT4 was a logical step for the series. We took a bold move allowing manufacturers to test in public on race weekends. Through transparency other manufacturers looked at the GT4 platform developed by Stephane Ratel and technical director Claude Surmont (SRO) for their North America customers. Already five new manufacturers have joined since last season’s final race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. This also answers to feedback from the fans for more manufacturers.”

Two-time GTS champion Lawson Aschenbach (548 points) currently leads the GTS point standings as the series heads to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on May 19-22 for Rounds 7-8.  Fifteen-year-old racer Parker Chase (518) holds the second position in GTS points followed by Brent Sandberg (504), Nate Stacy (440), Jack Roush Jr. (420), Scott Dollahite (361) and Tony Gaples (326).

IndyCar entry lists for Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IndyCar entry lists Indianapolis
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There are 25 drivers on the NTT IndyCar Series entry lists at Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course with a few new yet familiar faces for the Oct. 2-3 race weekend.

Four-time champion Sebastien Bourdais will make his season debut in the No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet (shifting Dalton Kellett to the No. 41) with AJ Foyt Racing, which he is joining full time next season. James Hinchcliffe, who had run three races with Andretti Autosport, will return in place of Zach Veach in the No. 26 Dallara-Honda. Helio Castroneves will drive Arrow McLaren SP’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevy for Oliver Askew, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.

Sage Karam, who has two IndyCar starts this year at IMS (the road course on July 4 and the Indy 500 on Aug. 23), also will return to the series in Dreyer & Reinbold’s No. 24 Dallara-Chevrolet.

HARVEST GP ENTRY LISTS: Friday l Saturday

Friday and Saturday of the Harvest GP presented by GMR will mark the second and third races this season on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. While the July 4 race on the circuit was 80 laps, Friday’s distance is 85 laps, and Saturday will be a 75-lap event.

Championship leader Scott Dixon led 26 of 80 laps to win the July 4 race at the IMS road course. With three races remaining in the series, the five-time series champion enters with a 72-point lead on Josef Newgarden.

Click here to see who’s on the IndyCar entry lists in Race 1 and in Race 2 for the Harvest GP presented by GMR at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.


START TIMES AND TV INFO FOR INDYCAR AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE (all times ET):

Thursday

IndyCar NTT Series practice: 2:25-3:40 p.m., NBC Sports Gold

IndyCar qualifying, Race 1: 6:20 p.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

Friday

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 1: 3:30 p.m. (green flag, 5 p.m.), USA Network, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday

—IndyCar qualifying: 10:20 a.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 2: 2:30 p.m (green flag, 2:31 p.m.)., NBC, NBC Sports Gold