FRANKLIN, Tenn. – Cincinnati's Doran Racing and Salt Lake City-based CA Sport will add two Nissan 370Z NISMOs to a strong Pirelli World Challenge field at the Honda Indy 200 this weekend at Mid-Ohio. This weekend will mark the first time either team has competed in the World Challenge GTS category, and it gives Nissan four cars in the two races on August 2-3.
The Nissan 370s, driven by BJ Zacharias and Vesko Kozarov, respectively, join series regulars Ric Bushey and Brian Kleeman in competing in a very competitive GTS category at the historic 2.4-mile road course in central Ohio. For Zacharias, it's a chance to race on what he calls his home track.
"I love to race at Mid-Ohio, and I am grateful to Kevin and the Doran team as well as Nissan for giving us the chance to race here," said 40-year old SCCA and IMSA veteran Zacharias. "The #14 car has had some great runs this season in IMSA, so I'm very excited to see how we perform in the shorter sprint format of Pirelli World Challenge against some different cars and drivers."
The Doran car will carry #74 this weekend only. While it will be new to Pirelli World Challenge action, the sleek black CA Sport Z-car will be turning its first wheel in competition on any racetrack. CA Sport also campaigns a pair of Nissan Altimas in both IMSA and PWC, so this weekend will be extra duty for the Utah-based team.
"It's been a hectic week already," said team owner Lara Tallman. "We raced the Altimas at the IMSA event in Indianapolis, so we're spending about 18 hours a day preparing those cars as well as getting the 370Z ready to go for Vesko's first start in the World Challenge. We can't wait to bring out the new Z. It takes a lot of work to get all three cars ready to race, so we know it's going to be a grind for a few more days."
Driving the two CA Sport/Skullcandy Nissan Altimas in the TC class will be GT Academy champions Brian Heitkotter and Steve Doherty. Doherty won the first event in July at Road America but was crashed out of the second race. Heitkotter took fifth and third in the two races last month.
World Challenge veteran Ric Bushey will campaign his beautiful silver and black #51 Nissan 370Z at Mid-Ohio, hoping to top his season-best fifth place finish in GTS at Detroit. Bushey is currently 10th in the driver championship point standings.
Baltimore's Brian Kleeman will be looking to get his #07 370Z NISMO back on track after a couple of tough breaks with mechanical issues have dogged the team this season. The car carries a new Z1 Motorsports livery for 2014.
TC category will race on Friday, August 1 at 5:10 p.m. EDT and Saturday August 2 at 4:35 EDT.
The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio GT-GTS category races are on Saturday August 2 at 11:55 a.m. and Sunday August 3 at 1:15 p.m. EDT. Those events will air on NBC Sports Network on Sunday, August 10 at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
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