43rd Toyota Grand Prix Of Long Beach Media Day Track Ride With GMG's James Sofronas
In A Race Prepared Pirelli World Challenge No. 14 Porsche GT3-R
A two-lap trip around the Toyota Grand Prix Of Long Beach temporary street circuit by Managing Editor of Performance & Racing Tech Talk, Edmund Jenks with Global Motorsports Group (GMG) team owner/competitor James Sofronas driving the GMG race prepared Porsche 911 GT3-R. Video Credit: Edmund Jenks (2017)
GMG’S JAMES SOFRONAS COMMITTED TO FULL SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP; VANTHOOR FOR SELECT SPRINTX EVENTS
Returning for his 15th season of Pirelli World Challenge competition, Global Motorsports Group (GMG) team owner James Sofronas will arrive at next week’s Grand Prix of St. Petersburg fully committed to the series’ sprint rounds, continuing his commitment with Porsche Motorsport North America and the venerable Porsche 911 GT3 R. Beyond the five-race sprint championship, however, the team is proud to announce the addition of Porsche Motorsport works driver Laurens Vanthoor for the opening two rounds of the series’ SprintX championship, co-driving with Sofronas in pursuit of overall victory.
“It’s great to be back in the Pirelli World Challenge for another season,” stated Sofronas. “It’s incredible to think of how the series has grown over the years, and it’s been an honor to be a part of it. Our business has grown with it of course, and 2017 looks to be a great continuation of that. Last year we really enjoyed working with the current iteration of the Porsche 911 GT3 R in its first year of development, and headed in to this year we have a very good understanding of what to expect. Of course a big part of that is our relationship with Porsche Motorsport North America, and the addition of Laurens Vanthoor for our opening two SprintX events is a huge demonstration of our mutual commitment to one another. Porsche has been a big part of our business over the years, and bringing in such a talented co-driver is a great opportunity for everyone.
As a team with a rich history of competing with Porsche machinery, GMG and Sofronas’ return to the marque is part of a partnership that has been synonymous with the team’s growth. Not only did Sofronas take his first victory, as well as his best championship finish under the Porsche Motorsport umbrella, but the team also played a critical role in the 2008 and 2009 Manufacturer’s Championship won by the brand. In 2016, GMG also held the unique distinction of being the top sales team for the Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport, selling more cars than any other in North America.
Of course, beyond the team’s on-track performance, Sofronas and company will continue to use the series as a development for their expanding street tuning business. As the leading performance tuning shop in Southern California, the team has used their trackside experience with Porsche and a number of other marques to give them a unique advantage in understanding the characteristics of their street counterparts. In such, no other organization in the area has a deeper understanding of the dynamics and engineering to make their vehicles perform, which has translated to a number of street car performance products. In addition, the racing environment has created an incredible learning ground for team personnel, with the team offering the same championship-winning experience on the track for a client’s daily driver.
In addition to Sofronas’s full efforts behind the wheel of the No. 14, the team owner will also maintain a busy racing schedule with the team’s three car program. Beyond running Alec Udell and Preston Calvert in another Porsche 911 GT3 R, the addition of George Kurtz’s McLaren 570S GT4 GTS program will add another dynamic in the form of experiential entertainment, with Kurtz bringing on CrowdStrike as a primary sponsor. On any given weekend, CrowdStrike will use the team and series as an opportunity to host several dozen partners, clients, and guests, the type of program that Sofronas relishes in, fully aware of what the series has to offer.
... notes From The EDJE
TAGS: 43rd, Toyota Grand Prix Of Long Beach, Media Day, Track Ride, GMG, James Sofronas, Pirelli World Challenge, Global Motorsports Group, Porsche, GT3-R, The EDJE