Thompson Finishes on the Podium at VIR as 2021 Carrera Cup North America Nears Completion

Thompson Finishes on the Podium at VIR as 2021 Carrera Cup North America Nears Completion

ALTON, VA

The inaugural Porsche Carrera Cup North America visited VIRginia International Raceway this weekend for races 12 & 13 of the sixteen race schedule. The iconic track provided some spectacular racing action as the Pro-Class championship came into focus. Thompson and team JDX Racing entered the weekend holding third in the overall standings, looking to further improve on their position after a strong performance in Indianapolis last month. In each race, Thompson and the #9 of JDX Racing improved on their fifth-place starting position, earning fourth-place and third-place finishes on the weekend. 

Through winding esses and dramatic elevation changes, the high-speed VIR road course rendered tremendous bumper-to-bumper racing throughout the weekend. From his starting position on the third-row, Thompson was fully entangled in action early in the two races.  

In Race 1 on Saturday, a tough start dropped Thompson back to the sixth spot in the opening corners of the race. Through seven laps, he battled veteran drivers Leh Keen and Erik Johansson to regain his original position and then take fourth place. Finding a gap greater than eight seconds to the race leader, Thompson then managed his fastest laps of the race in an effort to close distance on a podium position. While that gap would narrow through the middle part of the contest, his pace began to fade as the laps added up. Neither the safety car nor a caution flag would offer any relief through 26 laps of the 3.27-mile circuit before the checkered flag fell.

On Sunday, an exciting start saw multiple exchanges among the top five cars through the opening corners of Race 2. A significant wreck resulted when fellow Junior driver Van Berlo edged across the nose of the JDX Racing #9 at the entrance of Turn 3. Van Berlo left the track and skidded across the grass into the barriers outside the high-speed left-hander. Thompson, who held forth at the time of the incident, took the final podium position while the safety crew collected the wrecked Porsche 992 and repaired damaged ARMCO barriers. 

After five laps behind the safety car, green flag action resumed. Thompson managed early pressure on the race leaders Dickinson and Priaulx but again faded as the race progressed. He maintained third place, unchallenged, until the end of the contest.

A third and fourth-place finish on the weekend provides Thompson with a solid gain in championship points. However, after narrowing the gap to championship leaders in races at Road America and Indianapolis Motor Speedway, here Thompson saw the distance to the leader expand. Now, just three races remain on the schedule. All will come during a triple-header weekend at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta on November 10 – 12. There, Thompson will look to put an exclamation mark on what has been a strong season’s campaign by adding another win.

Parker Thompson
“It’s never a bad weekend when we can climb the podium. This was my first visit to the beautiful VIRginia International Raceway. Some testing issues meant we probably weren’t as prepared as we would have liked for the action this weekend. The crew had a late night yesterday trying to find us an edge, and it showed benefits! 

I hate to see anyone wreck a car out there. Van Berlo and I have raced each other hard and clean throughout the year. I was on the outside of him going into turn three and I don’t think he knew that I was there. I’m glad to see that he wasn’t seriously hurt.

Special thanks to our partners: Porsche Canada, Byers Porsche, and Renier Construction. Michael Wappler at Surgere and Yero Hilts at SSi Artificial Lift brought a great group of people here to VIR for the weekend. We had an incredible weekend together. I’m looking forward to another incredible weekend at the season finale in Atlanta next month!”

Images credit Bob Chapman / Autosport Image

IMSA 2021 CARRERA CUP NORTH AMERICA – Rounds 12 & 13, VIRginia International Raceway

Round 12 – Provisional (PDF)
Round 13 – Provisional (PDF)
Overall Standings – Provisional (PDF)

Complete results are available at results.imsa.com

Thompson Earns Third Win of the Year as Carrera Cup North America Visits Indianapolis

Thompson Earns Third Win of the Year as Carrera Cup North America Visits Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS, IN

The Porsche Sportscar Together Fest and Indianapolis Motor Speedway played host to a unique event for Carrera Cup North America Presented By Cayman Islands this past weekend. Three races at The Yard of Bricks provided a massive opportunity to transform the championship. Porsche Canada driver Parker Thompson entered the weekend holding third place in the overall standings. Coming off of a win last month at Road America, expectations for Thompson were high. He did not disappoint. Thompson piloted the #9 Porsche 992 of JDX Racing to his third win of the season, leading more laps than all drivers throughout the weekend.

After setting the fastest time in Friday afternoon’s practice, Thompson began qualifying with a blistering lap of 1:36.620 seconds. That would hold as best for most of the session. A late lap by Seb Priaulx would better that time by little more than a tenth of a second, and Thompson was unable to counter before the session closed. He would start on the outside of the front row for all three races throughout the weekend.

In Race 1 on Saturday afternoon, Thompson and the red, white, and grey #9 of JDX Racing would hold second for the entirety of the contest. In an incident-free race, his position was never challenged. Apart from aggressive passing attempts on the opening lap, Thompson followed Priaulx through twenty-eight laps to the finish and took the second step on the podium.

Seemingly taking a lesson from Race 1, Thompson was able to exploit Priaulx as the pair again lined up on the front row for Race 2. Thompson got a jump on Priaulx at the start and was able to pass him under braking into turn one on the opening lap. From there, the Canadian never looked back, holding his lead through two re-starts and taking the checkered flag after twenty-five laps. It was a dominant win from Thompson, and one that provided a massive boost in the championship standings as fellow contenders Priaulx and Van Berlo fell victim to incidents late in the race.

In the weekend’s final race, Thompson again lined up beside Priaulx at the start and again seemed to find an early advantage. Aggressively committing to holding the outside position through turn one on the opening lap, Thompson set the #9 JDX Racing car on the advantageous inside line for turn 2. Narrowly squeezing past Priaulx, he took the lead in the opening moments of the race. Unfortunately, a mid-field collision on that opening lap resulted in a lengthy caution as the crew worked to clean an extensive spill. After ten laps under yellow, race action resumed, and Thompson was immediately penalized for a start lane violation. Re-emerging in 19th position, he had limited time to recover. In four laps, Thompson moved eight spots to P-11 before the checkered flag fell.

With the results of Race 3 providing a reverse of fortunes to Race 2, Thompson maintains his third position in the standings for Carrera Cup North America Presented By Cayman Islands. The standings tighten however. Less than 60 points separate the top three drivers. As Thompson and JDX Racing seem to grow stronger and stronger as the season progresses, we can expect action in the series to intensify with five rounds remaining. Rounds 12 and 13 will run October 8 – 10 at Virginia International Raceway.

 

Parker Thompson

“Any weekend that I get to go racing is special, but three races in two days here with Porsche taking over Indianapolis Motor Speedway was an experience I’ll never forget. I’m so honored to work with the team at JDX Racing. The #9 feels like it gets faster and faster every stint. That takes an effort that extends to each member of our group. Special thanks go to our incredible partners at Porsche Canada, Surgere, SSi Artificial Lift, Byers Porsche, and Renier Construction. We had a penalty in Race 3 that we are less than happy about, but I’m not going to let that take away from our overall performance this weekend. We put another win in the books. Now, it’s time to put our heads down and get ready for VIR.”

Images credit Bob Chapman / Autosport Image

IMSA 2021 CARRERA CUP NORTH AMERICA
Rounds 9 – 11, Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Round 9 – Provisional (PDF)
Round 10 – Provisional (PDF)
Round 11 – Provisional (PDF)
Overall Standings – Provisional (PDF)

Complete results are available at results.imsa.com

Parker Thompson Wins as Carrera Cup North America Takes On Circuit of the Americas

Parker Thompson Wins as Carrera Cup North America Takes On Circuit of the Americas

AUSTIN, TX

Carrera Cup North America visited Austin’s Circuit of the Americas this weekend for rounds 3 & 4 of the 2021 season. Weather played a significant role in the event, while Parker Thompson pulled off one of the most exciting performances of his career. Driving for Porsche Canada, Thompson piloted the #9 Byers Porsche / JDX Racing GT3 Cup to his first win of the season.

Whether driving open-wheel or closed cockpit racecars, Thompson has managed some of the best performances of his career in unsettled weather. This past weekend, the Porsche Junior driver’s pace was evident right from the opening laps of practice as rain fell at Circuit of the Americas. Practice 1 saw him clock a time nearly three-tenths of a second ahead of the field. 

Unfortunately, rain would intensify overnight and create complications for race organizers. On Saturday afternoon, water overwhelmed the Texas road course and forced the cancellation of qualifying. Thompson and the 26 car field were unable to prove their pace in an official session. Instead, the starting order for Sunday morning’s race was determined by championship point totals.

Two top-five finishes at the season opener in Sebring meant that Thompson would line up on row three of the grid for Race 1. Remnants of water from an early morning rainfall left conditions on the track less than ideal. With some drivers opting for wet tire options, and others opting for Michelin’s slick tire, there was tumultuous action when the green flag flew. While all drivers managed the opening laps without incident, Thompson was able to earn an advantage in the conditions and gain multiple positions. Four laps in, he found himself in second place with a four-second gap to Kelly-Moss driver Kay Van Berlo.

Through sixteen laps, Thompson chipped away at the race leader while the track continued to dry. In the final moments of the race, sitting multiple car lengths behind Van Berlo, it looked like Thompson might settle for a second-place finish. Instead, a surprising series of moves in turns 16 through 18 put Thompson and Van Berlo side by side as the pair entered the final straight. Thompson would win the straight shot to the finish line and take the checkered flag! It was a dynamic win for Thompson, who had top-tier pace but a less optimum starting position.

In the second race of the weekend, Thompson found that dry track conditions did not suit the setup of his white and red maple-leaf liveried Porsche quite as well. Aggressive action from other drivers on the race start forced Thompson to give up multiple spots. As the field spread out, he found clean opportunities to move forward however, regaining ground to create a gap for himself in fourth. Thompson would hold that position for the remainder of the race.

Parker Thompson
“What an incredible weekend! I’m excited to come through with a win for the team at JDX Racing. With support from our amazing partners at Porsche Canada, Byers Porsche, Renier Construction, Surgere, and SSi Artificial Lift Systems, we’ve put in some great work since the season opener at Sebring. Everyone is clearly invested in our effort! The team at SSi even made the trip here this weekend to take in the action. There is nothing better than being able to reward our group with a win and celebrate together. Moments like this provide the fuel it takes to win championships!”

Now four races into this inaugural Carrera Cup North America season, featuring the new Porsche 992, Thompson can once again claim that he has won races in every race car he has driven throughout his career. From Formula 1600, through the Road to Indy, touring cars, and Porsche spec racing, Thompson has earned a total of 31 wins.

Twelve remaining races in the 2021 Carrera Cup North America schedule will surely provide Thompson the opportunity to add even more wins to that total. Next up, the series will visit Watkins Glen International, New York, on June 24th. Thompson will enter that event after making a dramatic impression on the series in Texas. He will look to improve on the third-place standing he currently holds in the overall championship race.

Images credit Porsche Motorsport North America

IMSA 2021 CARRERA CUP NORTH AMERICA – Rounds 3 & 4, Circuit of the Americas

Round 3 – Provisional (PDF)
Round 4 – Provisional (PDF)
Overall Standings – Provisional (PDF)

Complete results available at results.imsa.com

Porsche Canada Supports Parker Thompson in new Carrera Cup North America

Porsche Canada Supports Parker Thompson in new Carrera Cup North America

TORONTO, ON

Porsche Cars Canada, Ltd. (PCL) renews its engagement in supporting motorsport and young Canadian talent in the new North American-wide one-make series that is starting for the first time in 2021, with eight event rounds. Joining the newest Porsche racing series is Parker Thompson, the vice-champion from the 2019 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada, where he drove as a rookie.

“We are excited that the highly competitive Carrera Cup program is coming to North America for the first time and that the program is encouraging Canadian racing talent like Parker Thompson to challenge others on the grid in the all-new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car,” said Marc Ouayoun, President and CEO, Porsche Cars Canada, Ltd. “Parker displayed his skills well in his rookie season in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada, where he had four second-place finishes and a total of six podiums out of 12 races. He is determined for success with Porsche Motorsport one-make racing and we are happy to support by bringing additional awareness to his team’s efforts.”

“I’m thrilled to have been identified as a rising young talent to contend in the Porsche Carrera Cup North America this year and have Porsche Cars Canada, Ltd. alongside my journey with the strong and dedicated JDX Racing team,” said Parker Thompson. “I’m excited for the season to get underway and to start chasing checkered flags and the top step of the podium!”

With the program in place to support developing racing talent, Parker will be competing under the JDX Racing banner with a clear vision and intention to win the series and further develop. The 22-year-old will wear the Canadian colours in one of the most competitive one-make series in North America. Parker will join many PCL events in 2021 with a clear objective to share his passion for Porsche Motorsport with brand fans. The Red Deer, AB, native will also join PCL at the upcoming Sports Cup program. The Porsche Sports Cup is a new program that is starting in 2021 in Canada where customers will be able to experience their Porsche road cars at the three main racetracks across Canada: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Circuit Mont-Tremblant, and Area 27, in events designed to develop driving skills and track driving capabilities in a competitive, yet safe environment, organized by Porsche. More news on the program will be available shortly.

About Carrera Cup North America
Porsche Carrera Cup is recognized as one of the preeminent one-make racing series in the world, and with the North American series starting this year, a total of 21 iterations exist globally. The highly competitive reputation is due in no small part to the emphasis placed directly on driver skill, as every single car competing is identical.

About the 911 GT3 Cup
From the start of the 2021 season, the new 911 GT3 Cup car will be campaigned in various Carrera Cup programs globally. The spectacularly styled Cup car is the first racing version based on the current 992-generation and the first makes-cup racer of the sports car manufacturer to feature a wide turbo-spec body. Producing around 510 hp, it exceeds the output of its immediate predecessor by 25 horsepower.

About Porsche Cars Canada, Ltd.
Established in 2008, Porsche Cars Canada, Ltd. (PCL) is the exclusive importer and distributor of the Porsche 911, 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman, Taycan, Panamera, as well as Cayenne and Macan. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, since 2017, PCL employs a team of more than 50 in sales, aftersales, finance, marketing, retail development, and public relations. They, in turn, work to provide Porsche customers with a best-in-class experience in keeping with the brand’s 70-year history of leadership in the advancement of vehicle performance, safety, and efficiency. In 2019, a Parts Distribution Centre opened its doors in Mississauga to service the countrywide network of 21 Porsche Centres. PCL is the dedicated subsidiary of Porsche AG, headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany. In 2020, Porsche sold 7,402 units in Canada.

 

IMSA Carrera Cup North America

2021 SEASON SCHEDULE

Mar. 17 – 20      Sebring International Raceway
May 20 – 23.    Canadian Tire Motorsport Park
Jun. 24 – 27      Watkins Glen International
Jul. TBA            Toronto Indy
Aug. 06 – 08    Road America
Aug. 20 – 22     Virginia International Raceway
Sep. TBA           TBA
Oct. 06 – 09     Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta

For more information visit the official series site at https://porschecarreracup.us.

Parker Thompson Concludes the 2019 Season with a Massive Performance to Earn the Porsche GT3 Cup Vice Championship

Parker Thompson Concludes the 2019 Season with a Massive Performance to Earn the Porsche GT3 Cup Vice Championship

CIRCUIT MONT-TREMBLANT – MONT-TREMBLANT, QC

It has been an unforgettable season of racing for Red Deer’s Parker Thompson. Campaigning forty races across three different series, Thompson entered the year’s final weekend of racing having already clinched a title in the Canadian Touring Car Championship while placing third in the Indy Pro 2000 Championship on the Road to Indy. Holding third in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada Championship, Thompson and team SCB Racing were looking to move up with strong finishes in races on Saturday and Sunday at Circuit Mont-Tremblant. The 21-year-old series rookie did exactly that. A fourth place and a second-place finish gave Thompson enough points to leap-frog rival Jeff Kingsley and take second place in the overall 2019 Porsche GT3 Cup Championship.

With cool fall conditions and light rain, the weekend began with Saturday morning’s qualifying session and a supreme performance from Thompson. After great results in rain earlier this season, including a Porsche win at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, the Alberta native demonstrated his wet-weather prowess once again at Mont-Tremblant. Thompson piloted the #3 GT3 Cup Car of SCB Racing to the fastest time of the qualifying session, with more than a half-second cushion over second place.

Although performance during the qualifier should have given him the pole position for Race 1, a team infraction led to the disqualification of all lap times. Late in qualifying, the car was brought into the pits for last-minute adjustments that unfortunately were not completed before the session ended. As a result, Thompson was forced to start Race 1 from the back of the grid. 

On the drying track, Thompson showed incredible pace. He drove the black and gold #3 car from 14th to 4th place not once, but twice, after a drive-through penalty was assessed to him for jumping the race start. He would finish in 4th, clocking the fastest lap of the race.

Thompson’s performance on Saturday allowed him to start Sunday’s Race 2 from pole position. On a dry track, he found himself in an intense battle with championship leader Roman DeAngelis. The two drove nose to tail through 20 laps of the 4.2-kilometer road course before DeAngelis executed a pass that left Thompson in second place when the checkered flag fell.

These two strong finishes gave Thompson sufficient points to take second position in the overall championship. The result is an exclamation point at the end of a 2019 season where he has been impactful in every race that he competed in.  

Parker Thompson
“That was again a great weekend of racing, and I’m proud to end the year on a high note. Obviously, we are a bit disappointed about the penalty that took us off of the pole position for Race 1 in the rain. It’s hard not to think about what could have been. That said, we came into the weekend looking to take the second spot in the overall championship, and we met our target there! Many thanks to Ilker Starck, SCB Racing and our sponsors Porsche Centre Victoria and Island Circuit for a great year. I really can’t thank them enough for all their help this year. When I joined the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge series, I wasn’t entirely sure what I was in for. We were a young team but I think we smashed all expectations. I’d love to come back to the series in 2020 and build on our achievements this year.”

Images credit @motorsportlivemedia