Thompson Maintains Third Position in Carrera Cup North America Championship After Challenging Weekend at Watkins Glen

Thompson Maintains Third Position in Carrera Cup North America Championship After Challenging Weekend at Watkins Glen

WATKINS GLEN, NY

Thompson and team JDX Racing visited Watkins Glen International this past weekend for Rounds 5 & 6 of Carrera Cup North America. Entering the event following a win at Circuit Of The Americas last month, Thompson had the highest expectations for the weekend. Unfortunately, a track boundary violation in Qualifying put Thompson on his back foot early in the weekend, and the team was challenged to adjust for a newly designed Michelin slick tire released at the event. Nevertheless, seventh-place and sixth-place race finishes on the weekend critically allow Thompson to maintain his third-place position in the overall championship standings as the season nears its halfway point.

An updated Michelin slick tire that debuted on the rear of all Carrera Cup cars played a critical role throughout the event. The new tire delivered improved performance, but it also showed different characteristics on track for some teams. In the case of Thompson and JDX Racing, data earned during test sessions earlier in the year was at odds with the behavior seen from the new tire throughout the weekend. Setup adjustments were required throughout the weekend as the team looked to reconcile the new parts with their existing setup.

Demonstrating the adaptability he has earned a reputation for, Thompson showed excellent pace in early practice sessions and clocked top-five times through Qualifying. Review of the session however, revealed that the #9 JDX Racing Carrera Cup had exceeded track limits at a critical moment. The resulting penalty reduced Thompson’s top qualifying time by more than four-tenths of a second, slotting him into starting positions of P7 for Race 1 and P4 for Race 2.

The team strategically chose to capitalize on their stronger starting position in Race 2, reserving a fresh set of tires exclusively for the Saturday race. During racing action though, Thompson and the #9 car struggled with overall pace and could not sustain forward momentum. In Race 2, the advantage of his improved start position was eradicated when he was out-positioned in dense traffic on the opening lap. The final results showed seventh and sixth-place finishes, totaling nineteen points toward the series championship.

With eight of fourteen races on the season calendar remaining, pressure rises as the field behind Thompson closes in on his 3rd place overall standing. Ahead of Thompson, the gap widens. Thus far, he is one of only two drivers who have managed to take a win away from championship points leader, Kay Van Berlo. Thompson will look to do that once more when action resumes on August 6th at Road America.

 

Parker Thompson
“This Carrera Cup North America series is one of the most competitive series I’ve seen, and there is simply no margin for error. Unfortunately, this weekend we weren’t at our best, and our competitors punished us for it. We’ll take what we can from that and be ready to capitalize for the eight races that remain. With JDX Racing, Porsche Canada, Byers Porsche, Renier Construction, Surgere, and SSi Artificial Lift, we’ve got a committed and capable team behind us, and I’m excited to see what we can accomplish.”

Images credit Bob Chapman, Autosport Image

IMSA 2021 CARRERA CUP NORTH AMERICA – Rounds 5 & 6, Watkins Glen International

Round 5 – Official (PDF) Round 6 – Official (PDF) Overall Standings – Official (PDF)

Complete results 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

SSi Artificial Lift Systems Reunites with Parker Thompson for 2021

SSi Artificial Lift Systems Reunites with Parker Thompson for 2021

AUSTIN, TEXAS

SSi Artificial Lift Systems (SSi) will reunite with Parker Thompson for 2021 as he takes on the inaugural Porsche Carrera Cup North America racing championship. An oil and gas services provider and rod pump producer, SSi has found success around the world using patented lift systems providing unrivaled lift capacity and pumping stroke length. With core values emphasizing safety and reliability, Thompson and SSi share similar priorities in both racing and business operations. 

Adjustments to the 2021 Carrera Cup North America schedule, see the series visiting Texas’ Circuit of the Americas for rounds three and four of the championship series this weekend. This stop provides a special opportunity for the Houston-based SSi to initiate the 2021 partnership. Members of the SSi team will join Thompson and JDX racing this weekend, as the duo seeks to challenge for top step of the podium in Porsche Carrera Cup North America. 

Parker Thompson
“Having had the opportunity to work with SSi in 2020, I’m proud to continue with Dave Kennedy and his team again this year! As I get to know SSi better and better, I’ve learned tremendous respect for their achievements in both the oil and gas sector and the communities where they work. Innovative technology and a commitment to quality are key factors in their sustained success, and I will look to use those same attributes to find success here in Texas this weekend and in the Porsche Carrera Cup North America championship rounds that follow!”

About SSi Artificial Lift Systems

SSi (Sure Stroke Intelligent) Artificial Lift Systems manufactures, sells, and services surface-mounted artificial lift systems used to optimize production in oil and gas wells in onshore applications. The SSi design maximizes well production while reducing operations and maintenance costs, providing clients with low acquisition and installation costs.

Website: https://ssilift.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