Kelly Moss Motorsports’ quest for racing championships begins this weekend in the opening two rounds of the Pirelli World Challenge® Championships (PWC) at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.
Kelly Moss Vice President Jeff Stone saw competition in PWC as an opportunity to continue the relationship with and development of Colin Thompson, who won the 2014 IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA Platinum Cup Driver Championship with the team.
“Colin continues to mature as a driver,” Stone said. “We saw it last season and have continued to see it throughout the offseason in our testing. Our tests have gone really well, but we’re ready to get back into race mode.”
Thompson will make his debut in Pirelli World Challenge GT Cup presented by MOMO, a new PWC class. While the car is similar to what he drove to a championship victory in 2014, Thompson must adapt to nuances of the GT Cup machine.
In multiple test sessions throughout the offseason, Kelly Moss worked with Thompson on standing starts, one of the biggest changes he will face in PWC. Another challenge is multi-class racing. The Kelly Moss Porsche will be one of 50 cars on the state-of-the-art, 3.4-mile circuit track for two 50-minute sprint races.
GT Cup will race alongside the PWC GT and GT-A Championship classes. Stone sees Thompson’s adjustment to a new series as the biggest key to success.
“We’re focusing on having Colin stay out of the trouble,” Stone said. “Especially with the standing starts, you have to be extra careful. But if he does that we’re going to keep turning points and be successful.”
Both Kelly Moss and Thompson have high expectations after a successful season last year, with the consistency that delivered a title in 2014 also a goal for 2015.
“You’re always going for a win, but I won the championship last year and my first two races were runner-up finishes,” Thompson said. “I only won three times all season. It’s not necessarily about winning every race; it’s about points and being on the podium and consistent every single race.
“I’m hoping to sprinkle in wins here and there, but sometimes you have to play it safe and take the points where you can get them.”
This weekend also will feature the debut of the new partnership between Kelly Moss and TruSpeed Autosport, which will field GT Cup cars for drivers Sloan Urry and Phil Fogg Jr.
“This will be a unique situation with Tyler and TruSpeed,” Stone said of the partnership with TruSpeed team principal Tyler Tadevic and his team. “But we’re pleased with how it came together and are ready to get started. GT Cup will be very competitive, and we have three of those top drivers between us. We wish the best of luck to Sloan and Phil, and may the best man win.”
GT Cup Race 1 at the Grand Prix of Texas is scheduled for 2:45 p.m. (CT) Saturday, March 7, with Race 2 at 1:25 p.m. (CT) Sunday, March 8. Both races will be broadcast live on www.world-challengetv.com. The race will be re-aired at 11 a.m. (ET) Saturday, March 14 on CBS Sports Network.
For the latest news on Kelly Moss, visit www.kellymoss.com. For live updates from the track, like the team on Facebook and follow @kellymossmotors on Twitter.