BATAVIA, Ohio — All drivers want to be on the podium, but achieving that in a series as competitive as IMSA’s Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama can be a tall order.
Wright Motorsports, which won the series’ top drivers’ championship in both 2012 and 2013, will field Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars for five drivers in the series this year. Everyone on the Batavia, Ohio-based team intends to do their best to help all five of them pursue podium finishes and that elusive first overall victory starting with the season-opening doubleheader at Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Fla., March 18-20.
The doubleheader supports the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida on March 21. It is the first event in a 16-race, eight-event season that concludes in late September.
All five drivers will compete in the top class, Platinum Cup. They approach the challenge with different levels of experience, however.
Kasey Kuhlman of Cincinnati finished fifth in the Platinum class last season. He also dominated the Masters division, which is for drivers over the age of 45, sewing up the championship before the last event of the year. He returns with his familiar Kuhlsport No. 15.
Michael Schein of New York City and Santiago Creel of Mexico City, Mexico were two Wright Motorsports teammates who often battled each other last season. Schein finished eighth in the point standings last year and Creel was 10th. They hope to continue that battle, but move it up a few spots so they’re battling for podium finishes in 2015.
The other two Wright Motorsports IMSA GT3 Cup drivers in 2015 are both new to the team, and one is completely new to the series. John Goetz of Weston, Conn., will move up to the Platinum class this year after posting two victories in the Gold Cup division in 2013 with another team. He is the reigning Porsche Club Racing national champion in GTC4.
“I chose Wright because of its stellar reputation as a team capable of winning championships and helping its drivers succeed,” said Goetz, who is a global equity investment manager by profession. “In just a few test days I’ve experienced the team’s intensity and sincerity in getting the most out of the cars and drivers.”
In a move announced just yesterday, 20-year-old Elliott Skeen of Carlsbad, Calif. will make his series debut at Sebring in a Wright Motorsports-prepared Porsche.