Burrows and Hopwood Set for 2011 GRAND-AM Opener at Daytona
(24 January 2011)-- The quiet of a long off-season will be interrupted by the cacophony of racing motors coming to life this week as the 2011 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge kicks off at Daytona International Speedway with Friday's GRAND-AM 200.
Among scores of drivers and teams looking for success on the newly-repaved track will be former GRAND-AM champions Adam Burrows and Trevor Hopwood, who will look to build on 2010 with a strong opening round at the "World Center of Racing" driving the No. 12 Kia Forte Koup after impressing in their first season driving for the Kinetic Motorsports factory Kia racing program last year.
The 2010 season was a foundation-laying one of sorts, as renowned organization Kinetic Motorsports ushered the Kia Koup into its first-ever competition campaign in one of the continents most competitive categories on offer. Taking to the track in GRAND-AM's Street Tuner (ST) class against everything from turbo-powered VW's to Porsches, the Kia Koup effort opened with Burrows and Hopwood scoring a debut race-finish at Daytona, and continued to build momentum as the season progressed, with the duo finishing every race of the year on the way to closing the season out ninth in the championship and scoring a season-best result of fifth place at Lime Rock Park.
The return to the Kinetic organization for 2011 marks the first time the championship duo have returned to the same team since first moving to the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge ranks in 2007, when the two scored the championship in their rookie season and then followed that up with a run to second in the standings in 2008.
"Finally, the wait is over!" said Hopwood. "I can't wait to get out of this snow and back behind the wheel of the Koup at Daytona. I've been training every day, and I know that the Kinetic boys have been busy, too. The ST class is so competitive and hopefully we'll be able to keep making progress and getting stronger as the year progresses. We checked a lot of things off the to-do list last year and now we've got a whole new set of goals for this Koup and with Kinetic, we've got the perfect group behind us to make them happen starting this week."
GRAND-AM's 2011 championship will once again feature ten rounds of competition, stretching from Florida to California to Upstate New York.
"I've got my bag packed and I'm ready to go!" said Burrows in his most recent column on SPEED.com. "This off season has probably felt like the longest one ever because we are so eager to get back into the Koup and keep building on what we started last year. Daytona is finally here and I couldn't be more excited. I know that it's been a very fast off-season for the Kinetic guys who haven't stopped working since our last race of the season to keep developing the Koup. It's incredible to think about how much Kinetic has already accomplished since this time last year, and hopefully we can keep that going with more progression in the results starting at Daytona."
Kinetic Motorsport will once again sport a two-car entry for the 2011 season, and will look to continue to build speed with the Kia program starting this week at Daytona.
"Adam and Trevor have been consummate professionals inside and out of the car and we're extremely pleased to sign them again," said Kinetic principal Russell Smith. "Kia has been an excellent partner and after a very solid first season of learning, we are all very much looking forward to continuing to improve in 2011. Having Adam and Trevor on board will be a significant boost for us next year."
The 2011 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge season will open at Daytona International Speedway on January 28, 2011.