The fifth season of Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America gets underway May 4-6 at Circuit of The Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas. The series’ third consecutive year competing at the famous 3.4-mile, 20-turn road course will see new drivers and teams enter the fray with championship aspirations, beginning their 2017 campaigns with two rounds of racing.
Drivers will take to the track in purpose-built Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo race cars which enter their third year of service in the popular series.
Competition in the series is divided into separate classes, Pro, Pro-Am, Amateur (Am), and Lamborghini Cup – a class for those new to professional racing. Recognizing the breadth of talent in the Super Trofeo field, awards are given across four categories – Overall, Pro-Am, Am, and Lamborghini Cup.
The 2017 grid features new and returning drivers and teams who will be vying for championships across each class.
Ross Chouest, who won the Lamborghini Cup championship last season and was crowned World Champion in the category during the World Final in Valencia, Spain, moves up to the Am category in 2017 with DXDT Racing. He is joined by new teammates Austin Versteeg and Paul Terry, all representing Lamborghini Dallas. The 17-year-old Versteeg formerly raced prototypes in International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) competition and missed the 2016 series championship by only one point.
The Am class winner of last year’s race at COTA also returns to the series. Former National Hockey League (NHL) All-Star defenseman, Patrice Brisebois, who earned his maiden victory here in 2016 rejoins DAC Motorsports and Lamborghini Palm Beach, and will team with Brandon Gdovic and Emmanuel Anassis. Rounding out the DAC Motorsports lineup will be series newcomer JC Perez of Palm Beach, who is also currently competing in the IMSA Prototype Challenge series, and Ashley Freiberg.
Making series history, Freiberg is one of three women competing this season in Lamborghini Super Trofeo and she brings a wealth of racing expertise to the paddock. She has previously enjoyed victories in GT3 Cup Challenge competition, as well as IMSA’s SportsCar Challenge series.
Italian driver Edoardo Piscopo will be pairing up with series newcomer Taylor Proto in Pro-Am competition this year for US RaceTronics representing Lamborghini Beverly Hills.
Piscopo, who previously won the European, American and World Championship Super Trofeo titles, also served as the Huracán GT3 factory test driver in 2015.
Also returning with US RaceTronics is Brian Thienes. Thienes, who shared a car last season with European Super Trofeo Series Champion Patrick Kujala, will be driving solo in the Am category.
Making big news in the offseason was Prestige Performance and Wayne Taylor Racing who will field four cars for the duration of the 2017 season. The team’s lineup includes Super Trofeo’s first, all-female driver pairing with the Pro-Am roster of open-wheel veteran Pippa Mann and Jackie Heinricher. Mann will be making her Super Trofeo debut while Heinricher returns for a second year of competition.
Additionally, the team’s two cars in the Pro category will feature the pairings of sports car stalwart Alex Popow with Michele Beretta, and last year’s Pro-Am Champion, Trent Hindman with Riccardo Agostini.
Beretta and Agostini are both members of the Lamborghini Squadra Corse GT3 Junior Program. The program provides instruction and guidance designed to further develop both on and off-track performance, building specifically selected drivers into ambassadors for the brand.
There will be two, 50-minute sprint races in the season-opening event at COTA. Round 1 will start at 5:30 p.m. CDT Friday, May 5, with Round 2 at 9:45 a.m. CDT Saturday.
As part of a continuing partnership with Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. (Torque.TV), Lamborghini Super Trofeo races will be live-streamed on the following platforms: squadracorse.lamborghini.com, motortrendondemand.com and Internationally on imsa.tv and radiolemans.com. Tape-delayed coverage of each event will air on CBS Sports Network in primetime. The coverage will feature live commentary on both the broadcast and live streams.
The North American series continues to attract increasing numbers of competitors and interest.
The Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo adopts the V10 direct injection engine mounted on the road car, managed by a MoTeC control unit that delivers a maximum output of 620 horsepower. The frame is a hybrid carbon/aluminum construction with modified geometries to house an improved radiator up front and better accommodate the racing gearbox at the rear, which also provides better aerodynamics.