PORTLAND, Ore. (July 12, 2018) – A half dozen well-prepared BMW racing sports cars are set for Pirelli World Challenge action in a big Northwest return to Portland International Raceway as Fast Track Racing/CLASSIC BMW operation seeks race wins in the doubleheader program.
The popular PIR 1.97-mile road course in the Delta Park area hosts a large field of drivers and cars this weekend (July 13-15) with the Fast Track Racing squad bringing the biggest contingent with six racing cars (three in the GTS SprintX class and three in the Touring Car category) in an effort to collect more hardware for the Plano, Tex.-based BMW dealership’s trophy case.In the highly-competitive 60-minute, two-driver GTS SprintX events, the Pro/Am lineup of Justin Raphael and Stevan McAleer in the No.17 Raphael & Associates BMW M4 GT4 sports car lead the CLASSIC BMW lineup with 2016 TC series champion Toby Grahovec and Chris Ohmacht in the No. 92 CAO Strategic Partners/ETF Global BMW M4 GT4 machine in the Amateur division along with Daren Jorgensen and Brett Strom pairing up in the No. 113 Jet Environmental/Strom Motorsports BMW M4 GT in the Am class.
The Pirelli World Challenge season has seen strong Fast Track Racing performance from all of its BMW competitors including Raphael and McAleer scoring a runner-up finish in Pro-Am at Circuit of the Americas (COTA), while Grahovec and Ohmacht took top honors in the Amateur category at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR). Grahovec ranks third in the GTS SprintX Am division point standings.
“The Fast Track team had a strong testing session a few weeks back at Portland, so our six-car effort have confidence coming into the PWC weekend,” said Grahovec, who also serves as the team manager for the Fast Track Racing organization. “It’s been a long time since the Pirelli World Challenge has been in Portland, but the local racing fans will see a great racing weekend. We are all anxious to hit the track on Friday when practice runs begin.”
In the Touring Car class, Karl Wittmer brings his No. 91 CLASSIC BMW BMW M235iR sedan to Portland with the division’s point lead after a victory over his teammate Matt Travis in the No. 26 CLASSIC BMW BMW M235iR in a close battle in Lime Rock Park in May. In addition to his victory, Wittmer has also scored three additional podium (top-three) finishes to vault into the class point lead.
Travis, second and third in the twin bill at Lime Rock Park, now ranks third in TC points entering the Portland Round 7 and 8 races set for Saturday (July 14) and Sunday (July 15).
Veteran Jayson Clunie completes the Fast Track Racing TC three-car lineup in the No. 27 CLASSIC BMW BMW M235iR, as the Canadian racer currently holds down eighth in TC points despite only competing in four of the first six rounds of action.“After our strong showing at Lime Rock Park, I know the CLASSIC BMW TC drivers are excited about the Portland two races,” said Wittmer. “We believe the BMW M235iR is a good car for the fast track at Portland. The racing has been great in TC this year and we expect more side-by-side, bumper-to-bumper competition this weekend.”
The PWC GTS SprintX races at PIR are scheduled for Saturday at 4:40 p.m. PDT and Sunday at 11:55 a.m. PDT, while the two Touring Car main events will be at 9:35 a.m. PDT and 3:40 p.m. PDT on Sunday.
All Pirelli World Challenge races this weekend will be live streamed on www.world-challenge.com.
Classic BMW in Plano, Tex., heads up the BMW customer racing program in North America, with customer-built cars and captured the 2016 PWC Touring Car title with Gravohec and the BMW M235iRacing. The BMW M235iR racing sedan also won the PWC Touring Car manufacturer’s championship in 2017.