Former sportscar and stock car racer Rob Morgan is launching a new road racing tour for 2020, the GT Celebration Race Series. The new series is intended for Bronze-rated and below sports car drivers as well as “retired” FIA GT3 race cars. The inaugural GT Celebration Race Series will be competing at world-class racing facilities throughout portions of North America.
Morgan has formulated a two-tiered racing series which features a Red designation for newer-model cars, such as the Porsche 991, and Yellow designation for older-model cars, like the Porsche 997. Each event will consist of a three-day weekend of racing with two 40-minute sprint races over Saturday and Sunday.
In addition, the GT Celebration racing weekends will include three 30-minute practice sessions on Friday. The Saturday and Sunday schedule consists of a 30-minute practice, 20-minute qualifying, and 40-minute race. All 2020 GT Celebration events will be contested in conjunction with the Porsche Trophy West series.
“We are extremely excited to launch our new GT Celebration road racing sports car series in 2020,” said Morgan. “Our research has shown a large amount of older FIA GT3 sports cars are currently available for competition in North America. The owners of these cars have been looking for a new venue to enjoy their cars and compete against other FIA GT3 cars.
“We want these competitors to improve their racing skills and technical understanding of their cars in a no-pressure and fun atmosphere. Racers looking for a path towards a pro series such as IMSA, WEC or SRO can use GT Celebration as a launching pad. In the future, the plan is to grow the Yellow and Red designations into separate classes. This is to ensure equal and spirited competition on the track.”
Joining Morgan in the GT Celebration competition staff will be veteran officials Todd Snyder (Director of Competition and Operations), Kelly Collins (Sporting Director and Driver Advisor), Pam Kelley (Series Business Manager), Erica Davis (Hospitality and Business Assistant) and Brack Roederer (Transportation Manager).
Morgan’s father, Charles, a former sports car driver and former co-owner of WC Vision, will serve as Chairman. The Morgan father-son duo combine for over 70 years of diverse motorsports experience.
The GT Celebration Race Series has secured several prestigious partners to participate in the tour’s inaugural season including Pirelli Tires North America, Maglock, First Orion, G1Design, Ironclad Performance Wear, Alpine Stars and Mothers Polishes-Waxes-Cleaners.
“We’re delighted to start this new adventure,” said Marco Maria Tronchetti, Pirelli North America VP Motorsport. “Competition is at the very heart of Pirelli, which celebrates more than 110 years of motorsport and last year renewed its exclusive partnership with Formula 1. As well as supplying more than 220 car racing championships worldwide, Pirelli is one of the companies that invests most into research and development through motorsport, in order for the racing product to be as closely aligned to our road car tires as possible. By supplying the new GT Celebration Race Series, we want to be even closer the motorsport fans in the United States, one of our most important markets”.
In addition to the on-track activities at the GT Celebration weekends, the event experience will be enhanced with a Hospitality Trailer for the competitors to connect with series officials and other competitors. Every Friday, GT Celebration will host a special happy hour at the GT Celebration Race Series trailer.
After each race, GT Celebration will provide a winner’s circle presentation. At this presentation, the drivers will receive custom trophies for the podium finishers.
Professional GT teams have shown interest already in the GT Celebration tour, as well as part-time West Coast road racers. The new series has already created a large awareness within a variety of sport car racing enthusiasts.
“We believe Rob and his staff are on to something with this new series and format,” said Darren Law, program director and co-owner of Flying Lizard Motorsports. “This is a really good situation with the first generation GT3 cars. I think more people will gravitate to the series with this new opportunity. I know we, at Flying Lizard, have a variety of cars available for the series and you can run these GT3 cars at a very reduced price compared to the pro level. I can see a lot of potential with the GT Celebration series.”
“It will be a blast to celebrate these fine race cars where they belong, on the track battling it out with others,” said Jeff Gray, a sports car driver and an award-winning dentist from La Mesa, Calif. “We are look forward to competing in the GT Celebration in 2020.”
“The entire TruSpeed organization could not be more excited about the new GT Celebration series,” said Tyler Tadevic, TruSpeed AutoSport team owner. “With the advent of the GT Celebration series, we finally have a location for the guys who own this kind of hardware to go compete, have fun and do so at a professional level of racing without the kind of cost that comes along with professional racing.”
2020 GT Celebration schedule:
March 18, Thunderhill Raceway Park , Willows, Calif.
April 15-17, Thunderhill Raceway Park, Willows, Calif.
May 15-17, Sonoma Raceway, Sonoma, Calif.
May 29-31, Weather Tech Raceway Laguna Seca, Salinas, Calif.
August 19-23, Road America (Thursday Test Day), Elkhart Lake, Wis.
September 18-20, Utah Motorsports Campus, Grantsville, Utah
October 2-4, Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas