Volkswagen establishes "touring car school" in America Wolfsburg (16 September 2008). Halfway through the Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup it is clear that the series has firmly established itself in the American motorsport scene after just four events.
Volkswagen establishes "touring car school" in America
Wolfsburg (16 September 2008). Halfway through the Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup it is clear that the series has firmly established itself in the American motorsport scene after just four events. The American offshoot of the "touring car school", modelled after the ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup in Germany, looks back on a successful first half of its maiden season: some 30 drivers aged 16 to 26 from the USA, Canada and Mexico delivered gripping races at the first four rounds with four different winners. The Jetta TDI Cup combines promotion of young talent at reasonable costs with innovative clean diesel technology. Next weekend (19--21 September) the fifth race will be run in Iowa.
"After the first half of the Jetta TDI Cup's debut season, we can say that the unique concept of the 'touring car school' has also successfully established itself in the USA, after proving itself in Germany since 1998 with the ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup and its predecessor series, the Lupo Cup," says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen. "The identical and centrally entered Cup Jetta cars give the young drivers an optimum opportunity to show their talent - and with innovative TDI power by Volkswagen at that."
Stefan Jacoby, President and CEO of Volkswagen of America, provides a positive interim summary as well: "Volkswagen looks back on a long tradition in the American motorsport scene. That's why it was important for us to return to the circuits with a programme in keeping with the times. The inception of the new Jetta TDI Cup has created an ideal platform to present the advantages of Volkswagen's clean diesel technology. At the races staged so far, the drivers have delivered thrilling motorsport with the particularly fuel-efficient, production-based touring cars and caused diesel technology to be viewed in a different light."
Well-balanced sport and spectators galore
The U.S. inaugural round of the one-make cup, which exclusively uses ultra-modern diesel technology, took place at the VIRginia International Raceway on 27 April. The winner of the successful opening event - with a merely 0.463-second advantage over his closest rival - was 25-year-old Mark Pombo (USA). Each of the following races at Mosport/Canada and the tradition-steeped American circuits at Portland and Lime Rock Park produced a new winner, David Jurca, Josh Hurley and Chris Castagna (USA). Some 55 000 spectators enthusiastically watched the 170-hp Cup Jetta cars developed by Volkswagen Motorsport in Germany. The well-balanced field of the new racing series at the season's mid-point is also reflected in the points standings. After four of eight rounds of the season, Jurca is the front runner with 113 points, Hurley and Castagna follow with seven- and eight-point gaps, respectively. With more than one hundred points yet to be awarded, the fight for the first title remains open.
Four races to go before the title decision
The Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup's next stop will be at the Iowa Speedway on 19/20 September. It will be followed by Thunderbolt Raceway in New Jersey (27/28 September), the only event of the year with two back-to-back races. The season's finale will take place at Road Atlanta (01-04 October) in conjunction with the American Le Mans Series. The champion will receive up to 250 000 U.S. dollars for his next career step.