Indianapolis, IN. (Jan. 16, 2019) – Bryan Herta Autosport w/ Curb Agajanian will debut the Hyundai Veloster N TCR in the 2019 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge season opener at Daytona International Speedway as part of the 2019 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona event. Hyundai and Bryan Herta unveiled their #98 Bryan Herta Autosport Veloster N TCR race car and announced their 2019 driver roster at the North America International Auto Show in Detroit.
In addition to unveiling this year’s challenger, Hyundai TCR veterans Michael Lewis and Mark Wilkins were confirmed to return to the #98 Bryan Herta Autosport w/ Curb-Agajanian entry while Harry Gottsacker and Mason Filippi will join the team to drive the #21 Hyundai Veloster N TCR. “We are incredibly proud to be expanding our relationship with Hyundai by bringing this all new 2019 Veloster N TCR into the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge for the coming season,” said Bryan Herta. He continued, “We believe we have the most exciting driver lineup in the series, with proven TCR winners Michael Lewis and Mark Wilkins sharing the #98 and two exciting young talents in Mason Filippi and Harry Gottsacker co-driving in the #21.”
Bryan Herta Autosport and Hyundai began their partnership in 2018 with a two-car assault on the Pirelli World Challenge TCR class. They found success together immediately with the Hyundai i30N TCR, winning eight victories in 13 races with Michael Lewis and Mark Wilkins, and capturing the Team championship and Manufacturers championship for Hyundai.
Transitioning to the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge for 2019, the 350 horsepower Veloster N TCR was designed by the same Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing Team that developed the championship-winning i30 N TCR. Like its i30 stablemate, the Veloster N TCR is produced at Hyundai Motorsport Headquarters in Alzenau, Germany. The two cars share around 85 percent of their core components, including the 350-hp 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. “The Veloster is a perfect fit for the IMSA MICHELIN Pilot Challenge as we expand our motorsports efforts,” said Dean Evans, vice president, Marketing, Hyundai Motor America. “The all-new 2019 Veloster and Veloster N are playful, fun-to-drive cars, and thanks to Bryan and his team we’re excited to introduce them to racing fans across North America. In 2018, we won a manufacturer’s championship, so it is great to get back to racing with our proven veterans, a pair of great young drivers, and this brand-new car.”
The highly competitive IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge is a 10-race championship across North America’s legendary racetracks. It features 8 two-hour races and 2 four-hour endurance events, beginning with round one at Daytona International Raceway January 24 -25th. Follow the action live at www.imsa.com. NBC Sports Network with air the race from Daytona at 1pm ET on Wednesday, February 6th. For more information and visit www.BryanHertaAutosport.com.
No. 21 Hyundai Veloster N TCR - Mason Filippi
Born: April 23, 1998
Residence: Alamo, CA
Recent Racing Career:
Mason Filippi: “I am extremely excited to be joining Bryan Herta Autosport and Hyundai this year for the 2019 Michelin Pilot Challenge. I am looking forward to driving with such a strong team and the Veloster N TCR will be very competitive. The transition to IMSA’s format and long races presents a few more challenges that I am eagerly anticipating. It was great news to hear I have a fast co-driver Harry Gottsacker, He and I both have our eyes set on the podium.”
Born: July 28, 1999
Residence: San Antonia, Texas
Recent Racing Career:
Harry Gottsacker: “I am really looking forward to 2019 with Bryan Herta Autosport. They are a great organization and have had success in all levels that they have competed in. The work that we've done together as a team so far has been great, and I really look forward to working with such a great group of people throughout the season. Hyundai has been such a capable car in TCR with their i30N and I am sure the Veloster N TCR will be even better, I can’t wait to finally get my hands on it in Daytona in two weeks.”
No. 98 Veloster N TCR - Michael Lewis
Born: December 24, 1990
Residence: Laguna Beach, CA, USA
Recent Racing Career:
Michael Lewis: “I thank Bryan Herta for having me back on his team to help with the goal of winning races for his team and for Hyundai. The Veloster N has an incredibly strong following and it is an honor to be representing the Veloster N brand. People who follow our season can relate the Veloster N on the street to the Veloster N TCR that we use for racing purposes, and I think that is very cool. Additionally, the endurance race format with live pit stops and driver changes in the Michelin Pilot Challenge is a fun and new endeavor for our team. I am honored to join Mark Wilkins once again, and to work alongside Mason Filippi and Harry Gottsacker in our sister Veloster N TCR Race Car. Our team of engineers, management, mechanics, and drivers will work to bring attention to the fact that Hyundai not only builds efficient and economic cars, but also performance cars.”
Born: May 9, 1983
Residence: Mulmar, ON, Canada
Recent Racing Career:
Mark Wilkins: “It’s a privilege to represent Hyundai and Bryan Herta Autosport both on and off the race track and I look forward to showcasing the Hyundai Veloster N TCR throughout North America this season. I’m excited to be back in the IMSA paddock for 2019 with Hyundai! I love the venues we get to race at, the endurance race format and the added team component with the addition of pit stops. We’ve elevated the team aspect substantially and I’m especially excited to race with Michael in the same car. Michael is a real talent behind the wheel, a smart racer and real detail-oriented thinker. We get to carry on where we left off in 2018 and I think this is a great advantage as we dive into a new program in IMSA with a new car from Hyundai.”
Bryan Herta Autosport
Founded in 2009, Bryan Herta Autosport has grown from a single car Indy-Lights team into a championship winning auto racing franchise. Led by IndyCar and Sports Car star Bryan Herta, Bryan Herta Autosport has won races in every discipline they’ve entered, including Indy Lights, Indy Car, Global Rally Cross, and Pirelli World Challenge. BHA rose to prominence after winning the 2011 Indianapolis 500 in what was the final race of the Centennial Era, a celebration of 100 years of racing at The Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with driver Dan Wheldon. Five years late, BHA partnered with Andretti Autosport, and defied the odds again, winning their second Indianapolis 500 with rookie driver Alexander Rossi. BHA entered the Global Rally Cross Championship in 2015 under the name Bryan Herta Rallysport, scoring multiple podiums and wins. In 2018, BHA entered the Pirelli World Challenge in partnership with Hyundai and dominated the TCR class, winning seven races with drivers #98 Michael Lewis and #99 Mark Wilkins in the Hyundai i30N TCR, securing the team and manufacturers championships in the process. For 2019, BHA continues its’ successful partnership with Andretti Autosport to field the #98 U.S. Concrete Honda w/ Curb Agajanian in the IndyCar series for driver Marco Andretti. Also, in 2019, BHA takes their championship winning Hyundai TCR team to the IMSA Pilot Challenge where they will enter the #98 Hyundai Veloster N TCR for Michael Lewis and Mark Wilkins and the #21 for Harry Gottsacker and Mason Filippi.
Hyundai Motor America
Hyundai Motor America is focused on delivering an outstanding customer experience grounded in design leadership, engineering excellence and exceptional value in every vehicle we sell. Hyundai’s technology-rich product lineup of cars, SUVs and alternative-powered electric and fuel cell vehicles is backed by Hyundai Assurance—our promise to deliver peace of mind to our customers. Hyundai vehicles are sold and serviced through more than 830 dealerships nationwide with the majority sold in the U.S. built at U.S. manufacturing facilities, including Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama. Hyundai Motor America is headquartered in Fountain Valley, California, and is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Company of Korea.
P.R. – Bryan Herta Autosport