Bryan Herta Autosport is partnering with Hyundai to field two Hyundai i30 N TCR-class sedans in the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car road racing series.
Veteran PWC drivers Mark Wilkins and Michael Lewis will drive for BHA as the TCR class makes its PWC debut in 2018. Wilkins, 34, is a multi-time PWC winner in the GT and GTS categories in addition in other major sports car events, while Lewis, 27, has won four races in GT Sprint and SprintX competition.
“We couldn’t be more excited about our new relationship with Hyundai N in this highly competitive manufacturer-based Pirelli World Challenge TCR class,” said BHA President and CEO Bryan Herta. “Having witnessed the untapped potential of i30 N TCR race platform for this series, we’re more than confident we can leverage the strength of Hyundai’s racing and performance groups to great success in the 2018 season.”
Since its inception in 2009, BHA has grown from a single-car Indy Lights team into a two-time Indy 500 champion. Bryan Herta Rallysport made its debut in the Red Bull Global Rallycross Championship in 2015.
“Hyundai is thrilled about the prospects for our new N branded racing team competing in the Touring Car Racing class of Pirelli World Challenge,” said Dean Evans, chief marketing officer, Hyundai Motor America. “Our new partnership with world-renowned Bryan Herta Autosport and their phenomenal drivers coupled with the proven capabilities of our Hyundai i30 N racers puts us in a great position for success in the 2018 TCR season.”
The TCR Series, which originated in 2015, was marketed as a cost-effective spin-off of the World Touring Car Championship, targeted at C-segment hatchbacks production-based touring cars. The title TCR follows the naming convention now used by the FIA to classify the cars that compete in touring car racing.
Each TCR race will be 40 minutes in length and one rolling start and one standing start each weekend.
The PWC Touring Car divisions will compete in six doubleheader weekends (12 rounds total) beginning March 23-25 at Circuit of The Americas, followed by VIRginia International Raceway April 27-29, Lime Rock Park May 25-28, Portland on July 13-15, August 10-12 at Utah Motorsports Park and Watkins Glen International Aug. 31-Sept. 2.