Michael Cooper and Daniel Keilwitz have been named as Callaway Competition USA’s full-time drivers for the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge season.
Callaway unveiled one of its two Corvette C7 GT3-Rs, which will compete as a factory effort in GT class in both the sprint races and the two-driver format SprintX races.
“We are proud to have Daniel and Michael on board for our 2018 effort,” team owner Reeves Callaway said. “Both drivers have won several championships and will be excellent brand ambassadors for the Corvette C7 GT3-R’s debut year of American Competition. Daniel brings with him a wealth of knowledge about our team and the car, and Michael has years of experience on the tracks we’ll be competing on. Together, with the team we’re assembling, this will be an excellent program to show our future customers what the Corvette C7 GT3-R is capable of.”
Cooper is the defending SprintX champion and runner-up in the PWC GT class with Cadillac Racing. In the past six seasons, the 28-year-old Cooper has earned titles in Mazda MX-5 Cup (2011) and PWC’s TC class (2012) and GTS (2015). His three-year tenure as a GM factory driver ended at the end of the season when Cadillac withdrew from World Challenge.
The 28-year-old Keilwitz will make his U.S. racing debut after earning the ADAC GT Masters team title with teammate Jules Gounon. Since joining the ADAC GT Masters series in 2011, he became its all-time wins leader with 19 overall victories and a 2013 championship with Callaway, along with top-three championship finishes in 2014, 2016 and 2017. He brings two years’ experience behind the wheel of the Corvette C7 GT3-R.
The company says its factory effort will be for 2018 only. For 2019 and beyond, the manufacturer will withdraw its factory entries and instead offer full support to its customer racing efforts across North American sports car racing.