Berkeley MotorSports to make SCCA ProRacing SPEED World Challenge GT Series Debut at Upcoming Road America Round, August 1-3 MILWAUKEE, WI. - July 7, 2003 - Berkeley MotorSports, spearheaded by team principal and driver, Jason Berkeley, is set...
Berkeley MotorSports to make SCCA ProRacing SPEED World Challenge GT Series Debut at Upcoming Road America Round, August 1-3
MILWAUKEE, WI. - July 7, 2003 - Berkeley MotorSports, spearheaded by team principal and driver, Jason Berkeley, is set to make it's professional racing debut at the upcoming Road America round of the SCCA ProRacing SPEED TV World Challenge GT series, during the weekend of August 1-3, 2003. The team will be campaigning it's T1 CorvetteSports / Nomad World Pub Z06 Corvette. The race will be run during the weekend in support of the CART ChampCar series.
Berkeley MotorSports made it's initial club racing debut towards the end of last season as a shakedown for it's freshly prepared Z06 Corvette, with the intention of competing for the SCCA National Championship in the T1 category the following season. With nothing more than three shakedown races planned, Berkeley captured the 2002 SCCA Central Division Regional Championship in dominating fashion.
This season, Berkeley is running a limited National race schedule with the goal of earning an invitation to the Valvoline Runoffs at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. In four races this season, Berkeley has managed three podiums, including a win at Blackhawk Farms, and a fourth place finish at the prestigious 48th Annual Kohler / SCCA June Sprints at Road America- finishing ahead of some of the strongest T1 competitors in the nation. Berkeley is currently sitting in third place in the hotly contested SCCA Central Division National Points chase. Ahead of him in first place is Dave Roush, past SCCA National Champion, and part-time Grand-Am Cup driver for Honda of America Racing Team, and Pete Looby. Just behind him in fourth place is Tony Gaples, a full-time SCCA ProRacing SPEED World-Challenge GT competitor and last years SCCA Central Division champion.
Berkeley, along with Crew Chief Mustafa Emir, has been working diligently all season, within the confines of a very limited budget, to keep the T1 CorvetteSports / Nomad World Pub Z06 Corvette running fast and reliably. "The car that we race is Jason's only car- yes, the car that he drives to work everyday-so it's important that he avoids normal road hazards like road kill and bad civilian drivers. That would simply add to our workload and budget problem. We really need to find some sponsorship dollars so the team can swing the funds for a tow vehicle and a trailer," said Emir. "Not to mention the fact that there is added pressure on Jason to bring the car home in one piece, so that he can get to work the following Monday," Emir added.
With Road America being Berkeley's home track, the team felt that this was the perfect opportunity to jump in with both feet to North America's most competitive professional sports car racing series. "Jason really knows and loves this track. We feel that as long as we can qualify within the 110% rule, and Jason drives a clean, smart race, we should be able to finish quite satisfactorily for a T1 car, running to a much more restrictive set of car preparation rules than the other full time World Challenge competitors," stated Emir. Berkeley's Crew Chief was referring to the different rules that his car is prepared to. Normally running in SCCA Club Racing's T1 class, the Berkeley MotorSports entry is prepped to a set of rules that are very similar to Showroom Stock. However, the bulk of the field will be full-tilt World Challenge cars, with much more liberal preparation rules that allow significant power gains, aerodynamic devices, and relocated suspension pick-up points.
Berkeley MotorSports will be also be racing at Road America for an SCCA Club Racing National Event, the week prior to his World Challenge debut (July 25-27). Additionally, the team will be testing the World Challenge requisite 18" specification Toyo Tires for the first time. Says Emir, "We are looking forward to running the wider Toyo tires for the first time on larger diameter 18" wheels. We hope to gain some valuable set-up information while testing at the SCCA National prior to the World Challenge event."
Based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Berkeley MotorSports was formed in 2002 by team owner and driver Jason Berkeley. Berkeley is involved in the growth and administrative functions of the team. Berkeley is a former Callaway Cars engineer, and also worked as an engineer in the past for a variety of SCCA ProRacing and IMSA teams.