Customers dominate in IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge
The Hyundai Motor America-supported Bryan Herta Autosport team secured a fourth consecutive sweep of the drivers’, teams’ and manufacturers’ titles in the TCR class of the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge after a tense season finale at Road Atlanta.
“Bryan Herta Autosport and the Hyundai Elantra N TCR have been one of the benchmarks in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge again this season,” said Andrea, our Customer Racing Manager. “However, even though they have secured all three titles for a fourth time, it is only because of the consistency of the team and drivers in a very competitive championship.”
Flying to the finish
Drivers Harry Gottsacker and Robert Wickens started the two-hour finale with the points’ lead and were able to hold on to secure their first TCR titles, and a fifth consecutive drivers’ championship for the Hyundai Motor America-supported team. The pair also secured the teams’ title for the #33 Elantra N TCR entry.
“I’ve enjoyed a lot of success with Bryan Herta Autosport and Hyundai, but this is certainly the highlight of my career thus far,” commented Harry. “We’ve spent a lot of time working together to win this title and I am very pleased we’ve accomplished.”
Team-mates Mason Filippi and Mark Wilkins started the race third in points, but dominated the event – only losing the lead when the field was shuffled during the pit stops. Their performance transformed them into Harry and Robert’s closest title rivals, especially when rain started to fall during the closing stages of the race. While the #33 team finished fourth, Mason and Mark took the win to help secure the manufacturers’ championship crown.
“This is very rewarding and the culmination of a lot of hard work,” said Robert. “Big thanks to Hyundai and everyone out there for all of the support.”
Big in America
The number of our customers competing in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge grew once again in 2023. After debuting in championship at the end of 2022, Deily Motorsports ran two Elantra N TCR entries for much of the season, with a driver line-up led by Jacob Deily and Cabot Bigham. Van der Steur Racing also ran a Elantra N TCR for nine of the ten 2023 rounds with Tyler Maxson and Puerto Rican driver Bryan Ortiz sharing the seat. Their best result came at the season finale as they finished second. The team also returned their Veloster N TCR to the track for the Lime Rock Park weekend, where Rory van der Steur and teenager Luca Mars came home fifth.
“All of our customers in the championship hand strong campaigns,” added Andrea.