Porsche Carrera Cup North America Presented by the Cayman Islands – Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta – Round 16 of 16
• Porsche Junior Heinrich wins first North American race.
• Dickinson wins Pro class race as Thompson takes title.
• Castro race win not enough; Metni wins Pro-Am championship by one point.
• Kvamme earns first Am championship with 10 wins.
• All champions to be celebrated in year-end banquet tonight.
Braselton, Georgia. Porsche Junior driver Laurin Heinrich (Germany) concluded his North American debut with a victory in the 311RS Motorsports No. 12 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. It was the young German’s first weekend of competition in the Porsche Carrera North America Presented by the Cayman Islands. He charged from pole position to the top step of the podium in the premier one-make championship’s final round held today at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. The win in the second race of the weekend on the 2.54-mile, 12-turn road course in Braselton, Georgia by the 2022 Porsche Carrera Cup Germany champion was also the first win for 311RS Motorsports, one of the founding teams of the all-Porsche 911 GT3 Cup series in 2021.
The 2022 Celebration of Champions Presented by Visit Cayman Islands will be held tonight, recognizing champions in all three classes as well as the team entrant champion.
Second place overall in the 40-minute race went to Riley Dickinson (New Braunfels, Texas) in the No. 53 Kelly Moss Porsche. As Heinrich was in an invitational class, the Pro class win went to Dickinson. It was his second career win in the series, the first coming at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during Porsche Sports Car Together Fest in round 14 of the 16-race championship. The performance awarded the second-year driver third place in the championship.
Parker Thompson (Canadian-native living in Indianapolis, Indiana) drove to third-place overall, second place in Pro class, behind the wheel of the No. 9 JDX Racing Porsche. In combination with yesterday’s win, Thompson will be crowned the 2022 Pro class champion and the Al Holbert Cup awarded to the series’ overall champion.
Third place, with his highest finish in the series, was Dimitri Dimakos (Chicago, Illinois) in the No. 11 311RS Motorsport race car. It was the first time the 311RS Motorsports program has placed two cars on the Carrera Cup podium.
Efrin Castro (Dominican Republic) won the Pro-Am class race, as he did in race one yesterday, in the No. 65 Kelly Moss Porsche. However, the sweep of the weekend was not enough for the 2021 Pro-Am champion. Just as it did last year, the championship came down to Castro and Kelly Moss teammate Alan Metni (Austin, Texas) in the No. 99. While Castro did everything, he needed to win the title, so did Metni, who finished in third place to take the Drivers’ championship by a single point. Marco Cirone (Canada) placed the No. 84 Mark Motors Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car between the two title contenders to earn the runner-up spot on the weekend.
Mark Kvamme (Columbus, Ohio) opened the year with a victory, and he closes it the same way. In that time, he has captured a total of 10 wins in the class for drivers 57 years of age and older. The success led to his first championship in series. Chasing down the No. 43 MDK Motorsports entry was the Bob Mueller (Solana Beach, California) in the Goldcrest Motorsports No. 28. Third place went to John Goetz (Westcon, Connecticut) in the No. 57 Wright Motorsports Porsche. Goetz will finish in second place of the Am championship.
Kelly Moss locked their second Porsche Carrera Cup North America Entrants championship yesterday in round 15.
Laurin Heinrich, No. 12 311RS Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
“It has always been a dream of mine to come here and race in North America. Now to get to come here at the end of my first season as a Porsche Junior is just an amazing experience. I knew I had all the tools with my team, 311RS Motorsports, to win the race. We were really unlucky yesterday, but the team did an amazing job to make the Deluxe Corporation Porsche really fast again. Today I knew it was really straight forward, I just needed to push as hard as I can again. That is what I did and in the end it was enough. It was a dream of mine to win a race in the U.S. Thank you to the team.”
Pro Class Winner.
Riley Dickinson, No. 53 Kelly Moss Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
“What an unbelievable year for the series as a whole. I feel that Porsche Carrera Cup, from start to finish was, hands down the most entertaining championship that was on track throughout the course of the year. That is a testimony to everything Porsche Motorsport North America has done behind the scenes and at the forefront in making sure this championship is successful. If this is any indication of what years to come is going to look like it is great stuff. A huge thanks to everyone at Porsche for all their hard work. For me, a huge thank you to everyone at Kelly Moss at the track and back home at the shop. I can’t thank them enough. I am proud to represent them and my partners like Race for Childrens and Porsche Austin. I would not be able to do what I am able to do on the weekends without everyone, my friends and family, for their support. I am very much looking forward to what 2023 is going to bring.”
Pro-Am Class. Winner.
Efrin Castro, No. 65 Kelly Moss Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
“We did everything we had to do. I want to give a big thanks to the team. They supported me so much this year. It was amazing working with Kelly Moss. It came down to the wire. I am a big believer in whose destiny it is going to win the championship is going to win it. I did everything possible. Alan [Metni] is a great guy and a great racer and I am very happy for his championship win. The race was a very tough race to compete. I found a rhythm and a pace and I kept my position and came home in first place. That is all I could have done.”
Am Class. Winner.
Mark Kvamme, No. 43 MDK Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
“I was very focused. Goetz is the guy I was racing against [in the championship]. I got a really good start and he, unfortunately, got stuck in the melee a little bit and got pushed down to P6. About two-thirds into the race I was just focused on that sticker [for a race win]. I had Mueller right behind me the whole time. He was driving really, really well. I would gap him, and he would close, and I would gap him, and he would close. I really just focused on hitting my points. I was praying for no yellows. It was really great race.”
Where to Watch.
All rounds of the 2022 Porsche Carrera Cup North America championship can be found on the Porsche Motorsport North America TV presented by Deluxe: (https://www.youtube.com/c/PorscheMotorsportNorthAmerica).
About the Cayman Islands.
The Cayman Islands, located an hour south of Miami in the vibrant tranquility of western Caribbean, is a premier destination for travelers, thrill-seeking divers, adventurous epicures, honeymooners and families alike. The trio of islands affords each guest with the ultimate setting to enjoy life’s finest comforts, as the Caribbean’s leading luxury lifestyle destination. Five-star resorts, high-end villas, condos and breathtaking beachfront properties unique to each island offer a myriad of accommodation options for discerning travelers to enjoy. Additionally, the Cayman Islands is frequently heralded as the “Culinary Capital of the Caribbean” and offers endless gastronomic experiences to delight even the most seasoned of palates.
The Cayman Islands, world-renowned for impeccable “Caymankind” hospitality also employs best-in-class health and sanitation protocols to keep visitors and locals safe. To learn more about the Cayman Islands, please go to www.visitcaymanislands.com; www.divecayman.ky or call your local travel agent. For the most up-to-date travel guidance and protocols, please visit: https://www.exploregov.ky/coronavirus.
Porsche Carrera Cup North America Presented by The Cayman Islands.
Porsche Carrera Cup North America by The Cayman Islands is the premier one-make race series in the United States and Canada utilizing a combination of the latest Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car, type 992, and MICHELIN® Pilot® Sport Cup N3 racing slick to challenge the best road and street race courses on the continent. The second season of the championship is scheduled to host 16-rounds at eight venues. Each 40-minute race counts toward a season-long driver and team championship in each of three classes: Pro, Pro-Am and Am.
More on Porsche Carrera Cup North America by The Cayman Islands can be found at www.PorscheCarreraCup.us.
- Image courtesy of Porsche Motorsport North America.