Trans Am Series brings 52 cars to Sebring

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Trans Am Series is looking forward to a big field for the season opener.

When the Trans Am Series opens the 2014 Trans Am Championship at Sebring International Raceway on Sunday, March 2, history will be made. The current slate includes over 50 entries—a number unheard of in modern day Trans Am.

The last time a Trans Am race had 50 cars on grid was in 1982 at Road America, some 32 years go. In addition, this will be the fifth time in Trans Am’s history the field has reached 50 cars. Surprising, given the history and legacy of the Series.

“We’re very proud of the turnout for Sebring,” said John Clagett, President of The Trans Am Race Company. “It is a testament to how far Trans Am has come over the past few years. We owe a lot to all the hard work put in by the owners, drivers, teams and staff members who have helped us get this far. With 52 entries now confirmed for Sebring and 50 following up next weekend at Homestead, we have the potential to set an all time record for Trans Am entries at back-to-back weekends.”

The current slate includes 18 cars from the TA class, 22 in TA2 and 12 in TA3 for 52 in total, however that number has the potential to grow in the last few days as final entries are processed. The 22 TA2 and 12 TA3 entries set an all-time record for each of the recently introduced classes.

The increased numbers also mean new challenges for last year’s Champions. Doug Peterson, Cameron Lawrence and Chuck Cassaro will all be on track, beginning their respective title defenses.

Ton Sheehan, Chevrolet Camaro
Ton Sheehan, Chevrolet Camaro

Photo by: Jackie Buys

The best news for both Peterson and Lawrence is they’ll be at home, in Florida, on their home track, Sebring, to begin their pursuit of yet another Trans Am Championship. After all, they both used Sebring as a springboard last year, winning their respective races en route to incredible seasons. As Champions, they will be drivers to watch and favorites throughout the year, but on their home track, they’re an outright force.

Joining Peterson’s #87 3Dimensional.com Chevrolet Corvette and Lawrence’s #1 Miller Racing Chevrolet Camaro on grid come race day will be challengers aplenty—some familiar faces and some brand new.

Next to veterans like Ruman, Gregg, Pintaric, West, Fane, McGahern, Kent and Napieralski will be fresh faces. In total 16 drivers will be making their first ever Trans Am starts: Henry Gilbert, Jeff Van Lierop, Nathan Stokey, Tom Ellis, Dean Martin, Frank Lussier, Chris DeSalvo, David Mazyck, Michael Defontes, Kevin Poitras, Bobby Kennedy, Greg Socha, Jason Berkeley, Russ Snow, Lee Saunders and Joe Fitos.

All three classes prepare to open the year at Sebring, together and in unprecedented numbers. As they have for nearly three decades, the 850-plus horsepower grand touring beasts will be leading the way in the TA class, setting the pace for not just Trans Am but all of North American grand touring. The ever-growing TA2 class will highlight the prowess of American engineering and the ongoing rivalry between the Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang. At the same time, the TA3 class will highlight the power of production with the American Muscle and International Groups.

Trans Am will first take to the track at Sebring on Friday, February 28, at 11:10 am EST for an official practice, followed by another session at 4:35 pm. Saturday will feature a split qualifying session from 11:50 am to 12:30 pm, with TA on track first, followed by TA2 and TA3. Finally, Trans Am will open the 2014 Season with Round One of the 2014 Trans Am Championship on Sunday, March 2, with the 100.98 mile race with cars on grid at 2:10 pm and the race commencing at 2:35 pm.

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Series TRANSAM
Article type Previews
Tags camaro, corvette, sebring, trans am series