2019 IMSA MICHELIN Pilot Challenge
Canadian Tire Motorsports Park 120
#21 Harry Gottsacker and Mason Filippi
#98 Mark Wilkins and Michael Lewis
July 5-6, 2019
Canadian Tire Motorsports Park
2.459-mile road course, features 10 turns
Race: Saturday, July 6, 2019 at 1:55pm ET (2 Hours)
TV: LIVE on IMSA.TV, IMSA Radio and Thursday, July 11, 2019 at 6pm on NBC Sports Network
Live updates are available throughout the weekend on social media and www.bryanhertaautosport.com
Secret Weapon: Mark Wilkins has logged more miles at CTMP than any other track. Wilkins lives near Toronto and laps the track weekly either in practice or instructing.
Early Momentum: Just five races into IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge, Bryan Herta Autosport and Hyundai have tallied their first pole position, first victory and led 100 laps of IMSA competition.
SHOW: Pole Position: Next Level chronicles Bryan Herta Autosport’s 2019 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge season with an exciting behind the scenes look at team and drivers. This is the first of six episodes of the Motor Trend series: http://bit.ly/2Lbi35E. The second episode will be released next week and takes you home to San Francisco with Mason Filippi and to Texas with Harry Gottsacker for a day away from the track with the series youngest rookie pairing.
Mark Wilkins: "Canadian Tire Motorsport Park is my second home in the summer season. I’m typically instructing or lapping a few times a week and it’s a fantastic facility! CTMP/Mosport is a very intense circuit that requires complete focus and a great deal of respect. It’s fast with plenty of high-speed blind corners and elevation changes. It’s one of those old school tracks that doesn’t leave any room for error but one that rewards precise smooth driving. If you can get a good rhythm going the fast laps tend to click off and it’s all smiles. Does the Watkins Glen Set-Up Carry Over to CMTP? “I think our work at Watkins Glen setup wise will carry over quite well to CTMP. The circuit is a bit bumpier with a different surface than The Glen but our Veloster N TCR loves the long fast corners and isn’t afraid of a few bumps. I’m expecting we’ll be up to speed right away!”
I’ve raced many different types of cars around CTMP. Formula Fords, Formula 2000, Star Mazda, Daytona Prototype and other production cars. I love the track and it’s a great one to have in my backyard! I had a chance to run the Veloster N around CTMP last fall and it was one of the most fun days I’ve ever had. It was an open lapping day and we surprised a lot of people with how quick the car was. I’m stoked; let’s go racing!”
Michael Lewis: “Canadian Tire Motorsport Park is one of my favorite circuits. The track is so fast with many long duration corners with a lot of elevation. You really get to feel the car through the many long, fast turns and that is such a fun experience. Our Veloster N TCR is a great car in the turns, and it should be fun to run our car hard through these turns.” What Makes CTMP So Special? “My favorite corner is probably Turn 2 as you anticipate the fast left-hander, which goes down a massive hill, by starting to rotate the car on the crest of the hill. It’s a pretty cool experience to float over the top of the hill with your car slightly sideways. Challenging aspects of the track include the race-craft side of things. You can run side by side from Turn 1 through Turn 4 on restarts easily, so you really must be aware of your surroundings and be comfortable with close racing. Also, I think if you are leading on the last lap, it is especially challenging if it is a close race because the last three turns are perfect for wild, late passes that could happen on the outside or on the inside of the turns.”
Harry Gottsacker: “I’m looking forward to going back to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. It is a very flowing track with elevation changes and high speed, just like Watkins Glen. I would say it was one of the tracks that I probably would have liked to have done better at last year, and I’m looking forward to having Mark Wilkins’ local knowledge to get us up to speed this year.” Racing Full-Time: “We are running in IMSA and the SRO GT4 America series this year. This weekend at CTMP will be race 2 of a 4 race back-to-back stretch on both sides of North America. I’ve been fortunate to be involved in two great programs this season and had opportunities to lead races, stand on the podium, and fight for championships. We are looking to push even harder in the second half of the year.”
Mason Filippi: Canadian Tire Motorsport’s Park is one of my favorite tracks! It is challenging, fast, and fun to drive. It has an amazing flow to it, and you can lock in a Rhythm and knock out fast laps. The Veloster N TCR car loves fast corners and we will have a strong car there!
On the BHA Experience: “The BHA team has found success very early in the IMSA series. It’s an exciting time for us and exciting to be part of it. There is so much experience within this team from Bryan (Herta) to our engineers and crew chief. Coupling that with guys like Mark Wilkins and Michael Lewis, Harry and I are in a great position as youngest guys within the team. I think that shows in our pace, we’ve had some bad luck the last two races, but we’ve been in position to win and that matters, our time is coming.”
About 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. Just three races into their IMSA debut, BHA won the Mid-Ohio 120 in the #98 Hyundai Veloster N TCR with Wilkins and Lewis. Bryan Herta Autosport is the U.S. sales agent and parts support representative of Hyundai TCR race cars for customer teams. For more information, visit www.BryanHertaAutosport.com.
About 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.
Bryan Herta Autosport