Will look to “Bring the Thunder” to track’s annual SpeedFest
BOWMANVILLE, Ont. – The first three rounds of Pirelli World Challenge Sprint GT competition have been held on opposite United States coasts, and for the next two races K-PAX Racing will travel North of the border to attempt to continue its sensational streak of podium finishes. In each of the first three GT rounds in St. Petersburg (Fla.) and Long Beach (Calif.), the team has put at least one of its two Bentley Continental GT3s on the podium. The team will look to bring home more hardware from Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP) May 18-20 as Castrol presents the Victoria Day SpeedFest 2018.
“We are looking forward to the race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park,” K-PAX Racing Program Manager Darren Law said. “This is one of the fastest tracks in North America. The fast corners and top-speed sections of the track are real strengths of the Bentley, and it is a place where we hope to do well.”
Last season in the series’ GTS category, Rodrigo Baptista made his track debut. The promising GT3 talent battled to as high as third position in his debut there, and for this season he is optimistic that the No. 3 K-PAX Racing car will battle toward the top of the GTA class. Baptista has earned a class podium in two of the first three Sprint GTA races of the season, which includes two second-place finishes in the season opener at St. Petersburg.
“Last year I loved the track, and I’m really looking forward to going back,” Baptista said. “I think our car will be good, but we need to go there and see if that’ll be the case. I’m hoping we can have a good year there.”
Since retiring the No. 9 car from an incident in the third round of SprintX nearly three weeks ago at VIRginia International Raceway (VIR), K-PAX Racing has made a full recovery to contend with a two-car effort at CTMP. Law said the team “had their hands full since the incident at VIR,” but the team was poised to pick up the pieces in time for the next race.
“The No. 9 car was too damaged to repair in time for this race, and we were concerned about how we would even make it,” Law said. “We have to thank Jim Haughey for his belief in this team and Bentley GT for their support in locating another car. We have since flown a spare car from Malaysia, and the K-PAX Racing crew has been working full-time going through the car and getting it prepared. This is such a great team. These guys have put in a lot of hours this season, but we are happy to say the car will be ready to go.”
Álvaro Parente, who is in his third year with the team, said K-PAX Racing is a group of “hard-working and determined” individuals that wishes to see success at each one of its stops. Parente is seeking his second consecutive podium in the Sprint GT class this season during the Castrol presents the Victoria Day SpeedFest opener.
“My main concern is making sure everything is working properly, and we’ll go from there,” Parente said. “We still have a lot of work ahead of us. I’m hoping it’s a really good track for us, and I’m thinking positively for this track. It has really fast corners, though the middle-sector is quite slow. We’ll see what we can do.”
Prior to the race week, K-PAX Racing made an appearance at the British Embassy Washington in the District of Columbia. The team’s No. 3 Continental GT3 was on display alongside Bentley’s production Continental Supersports Convertible and Bentayga models for the embassy’s annual open house.
For more information about the Pirelli World Challenge’s stop at the Castrol presents the Victoria Day SpeedFest at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, visit world-challenge.com.