In 2010, the World Challenge Championship kicked off at St. Petersburg, Florida in March as a support event for the IndyCar series. In previous years, the series shared race weekends with the American Le Mans Series but in 2010 World Challenge began sharing more events with IndyCar. The season ended mid-September at Miller Motorsports Park. In all, there were a total of twelve races at eight different venues (Streets of St. Petersburg, Long Beach, Mosport, Watkins Glen, Toronto, Mid-Ohio, Virginia International Raceway and Miller Motorsports Park).

The series also introduced a new class in 2010 – GTS. The additional category resulted in changes to the rules for Touring Cars. The three classes were:

  • Grand Touring (GT) – This group included the series quickest cars: Porsche 911 GT3, Chevrolet Corvette, Dodge Viper, Nissan GT-R and Volvo S60. The preparation rules remained unchanged from the previous year for these vehicles.

  • Grand Touring Sport (GTS) – These were many of the cars that competed in last year’s Touring Car class (Acura TSX, Honda Civic, BMW 325i and Mazda 6). Competitors from the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge were also able to participate using the Ford Mustang FR500S.

  • Touring Car (TC) – Touring Cars were not allowed many of the modifications permitted by the 2009 rules. The preparation of the vehicles was more closely aligned with Grand Am Cup and the Sports Car Club of America’s Improved Touring classes. Makes competing in the category included the Scion tC, Mazda RX-8, Honda Civic, MAZDASPEED3, Volkswagen Jetta and Golf.

    2010 also marked the end of races for each class. In the new season, all classes competed in the same 50-minute race – 1996 was the last time that categories competed together.

    Rounds ten and eleven of the 2010 World Challenge champion were conducted at Virginia International Raceway. Competitors in the Grand Touring, Grand Touring Sport and Touring Car classes would race in two forty-minute contests around the eighteen-turn 3.270-mile road course.

  • Thirty-two drivers prepare for the start of Sunday’s race (round eleven) at Virginia International Raceway. On the pole is the No. 8 K-PAX Racing Volvo S60 of Andy Pilgrim. Gridded next to Pilgrim is Kuno Wittmer in a Dodge Viper. Behind the front row is 2008 Grand Touring Series champion, Randy Pobst in the second K-PAX entry. Out of view and sharing the second row with Pobst is the GMG Porsche driven by James Sofronas.
    A red flag at the beginning of the Grand Touring qualifying session prevented drivers from recording a time. The Grand Touring line-up for round ten was determined by points which gave Randy Pobst the pole position. Pobst would lead all twenty-two laps of the race to take his fourth victory of the season. On Sunday, he started third and finished second which was enough to clinch the 2010 World Challenge Grand Touring championship.
    After the Virginia International Raceway weekend, Touring car competitor, Todd Buras was four for four. Buras entered the first two rounds at Saint Petersburg driving the Irish Mike’s Racing Volkswagen Jetta GLI and won both races. At VIR, he qualified on the Touring car pole for rounds ten and eleven. Despite pressure from Touring Car point’s leader, Robert Stout, Buras was able to take the class victory both days.
    GTS point’s leader, Peter Cunningham could clinch the class championship at VIR . Cunningham was the fastest GTS competitor in the two practice sessions and qualifying. In round ten, he was leading the category when he pitted with a mechanical issue – Cunningham was classified fourth. The following day, he added to the World Challenge record books by winning his forty-first pole-position, fortieth race and sixth championship.
    Andy Pilgrim leads his teammate, Randy Pobst, through turn three. In weekend’s first event, Pilgrim started fifth in Grand Touring and captured the final spot on the podium. Starting on the pole Sunday, Pilgrim led flag to flag in the K-PAX Racing Volvo S60 and won by a margin of 1.392-seconds. The victory was especially satisfying for Pilgrim as it was his first win during what had been a disappointing season.
    Ernie Jakubowski’s first victory was short lived. On Saturday Jakubowski started from the rear of the GTS field but moved into the class lead and took the win when Peter Cunningham retired. In post-race inspection, officials found the Porsche’s ride height was not within specifications and the engine seal was broken - Jakubowski was disqualified. Corrections were made to the Porsche overnight and the following day he finished third in class.
    In round ten, Nick Esayian started second in the GTS category. During the race Esayian found himself battling with the Porsche Cayman of Ernie Jakubowski for the third position. The retirement of his teammate, Peter Cunningham promoted him to second and he moved to first in class after Jakubowski’s Porsche failed the post-race technical inspection. This was Esayian’s first win in seventy-five starts. On Sunday, he finished second in class.
    Touring Car championship point’s leader Robert Stout could only manage the sixth fastest time in practice. During qualifying, his lap times improved and he was gridded second in class for round ten. At the start, Stout passed category pole-sitter Todd Buras but before the end of the first lap, he was back in second place where he would remain to the checkered flag. The results were the same the following day but Stout scored enough points to secure the title.
    Kevin Helms had participated in the Saint Petersburg and Mid-Ohio rounds but his best results would occur at Virginia International Raceway. In the weekend’s first event, driving the No. 04 Acura RSX, Helms was gridded fourth in GTS. The retirement of Peter Cunningham and exclusion of Ernie Jakubowski promoted him to second in class. The following day he started fifth and finished fourth in GTS.
    Driving the No. 28 Whitehall Stable Acura TSX was Brett Sandberg. In the weekend’s first event, Sandberg started sixth in the Touring category and twenty-seventh overall. At the checkered flag, he earned his first series podium finish with a third place. In round eleven, Sandberg started and finished sixth in class.
    When the Grand Touring qualifying session was cancelled, James Sofronas driving the GMG Porsche 911 GT3 inherited the fourth starting position by virtue of his points. During race one, Sofronas passed Andy Pilgrim for second place and maintained the spot to the checkered flag - this earned him the Invisible Glass Clean Pass of the Race award. At the start of round eleven, Sofronas spun in turn one and fell back to ninth place but he finished third in class.
    Robb Holland drove the 303 Motorsports/Track Pro/Emich VW Volkswagen GTI. Holland started thirtieth overall and passed the most cars (twelve) in round ten. His performance earned him a fourth in Touring and the Optima Batteries Best Standing Start and the Sunoco Hard Charger awards. In the weekend’s final event, Holland captured the final spot on the Touring Car podium.
    It would be difficult but Kuno Wittmer still had a mathematical chance of catching Randy Pobst in the title chase. Wittmer started second in round ten, however it began to rain during the race and he drove off the course – he still managed to finish fourth. On Sunday, Wittmer qualified second but spun chasing the race leader, Andy Pilgrim. He retired with a mechanical problem on lap-19 – with this, Wittmer’s championship hopes ended.
    Tommy Sadler drove the No. 44 RealTime Racing Acura TSX. In round ten, Sadler started fifth in GTS but inherited a third place finish when his teammate, Peter Cunningham encountered mechanical issues and the Porsche of Ernie Jakubowski was disqualified. During of Sunday’s race, he was involved in starting line incident with Greg Shaffer that damaged the car – Sadler would finish twenty-fourth overall and fifth in class.
    Saturday’s World Challenge Grand Touring podium. In the center is K-PAX Racing’s Randy Pobst who earned his fourth victory of the 2010 season. To Pobst’s right is James Sofronas who captured a well-deserved second place after battling with Pobst’s teammate, Andy Pilgrim. Completing the podium is the driver of the No. 8 K-PAX Volvo, Andy Pilgrim.

    FINISHSTARTCLASSDRIVERCARLAPSRETIREMENTS
    11GTRandy PobstVolvo S6022-
    23GTJames SofronasPorsche 911 GT322-
    35GTAndy PilgrimVolvo S6022-
    42GTKuno WittmerDodge Viper22-
    57GTRob MorganPorsche 911 GT322-
    66GTJason DaskalosDodge Viper22-
    78GTJeff CourtneyDodge Viper22-
    89GTTony GaplesChevrolet Corvette22-
    910GTFred RobertsDodge Viper21-
    1011GTWilliam ZieglerPorsche 911 GT321-
    1116GTSNick EsayianAcura TSX20-
    1218GTSKevin HelmsAcura RSX20-
    1322TCTodd BurasVolkswagen Jetta GLI20-
    1423TCRobert StoutScion tC20-
    1519GTSTommy SadlerAcura TSX20-
    1615GTSPeter CunninghamAcura TSX20-
    1727TCBrett SandbergAcura TSX20-
    1830TCRobb HollandVolkswagen GTI20-
    1926TCGreg ShafferScion tC20-
    2024TCDevin CatesVolkswagen GTI20-
    2113GTJeff AltenburgPorsche 911 GT320-
    2226TCCarl HoberScion tC20-
    2328TCMichael PettifordVolkswagen Jetta GLI19-
    2431TCShea HolbrookHonda Civic Si19-
    2535TCDon IstookVolkswagen GTI19-
    2634TCTristan HerbertLexus IS30019-
    2733TCCharlie SolomonMazda RX-819-
    2836TCCarolyn KujalaVolkswagen Jetta GLI19-
    2937TCColin CohenVolkswagen GTI19-
    3020GTSStan WilsonDodge Neon SRT12Mechanical
    3113GTTomy DrissiChevrolet Corvette9Mechanical
    3232TCJose M ArmengolHonda Civic Si5Mechanical
    3325TCEric MeyerMazda RX-81Mechanical
    DQ21GTSErnie JakubowskiPorsche Cayman S20-
    344GTPatrick LindseyPorsche 911 GT30Did Not Start
    358GTSKarl PoeltlBMW E46 325i0Did Not Start

    FINISHSTARTCLASSDRIVERCARLAPSRETIREMENTS
    11GTAndy PilgrimVolvo S6022-
    23GTRandy PobstVolvo S6022-
    34GTJames SofronasPorsche 911 GT322-
    48GTJeff AltenburgPorsche 911 GT322-
    57GTRob MorganPorsche 911 GT322-
    610GTJeff CourtneyDodge Viper22-
    75GTTony GaplesChevrolet Corvette22-
    811GTFred RobertsDodge Viper22-
    912GTWilliam ZieglerPorsche 911 GT322-
    1013GTSPeter CunninghamAcura TSX21-
    1114GTSNick EsayianAcura TSX21-
    1215GTSErnie JakubowskiPorsche Cayman S21-
    1316GTSKevin HelmsAcura RSX21-
    1418TCTodd BurasVolkswagen Jetta GLI21-
    1520TCRobert StoutScion tC21-
    1621TCRobb HollandVolkswagen GTI21-
    1724TCMichael PettifordVolkswagen Jetta GLI21-
    1826TCBranden PetersonScion tC21-
    1930TCCharlie SolomonMazda RX-821-
    2022TCBrett SandbergAcura TSX21-
    2128TCDon IstookVolkswagen GTI21-
    2227TCDavid TuatyHonda Civic Si21Mechanical
    2332TCColin CohenVolkswagen GTI20-
    2417GTSTommy SadlerAcura TSX20-
    2531TCCarolyn KujalaVolkswagen Jetta GLI20-
    262GTKuno WittmerDodge Viper19Mechanical
    276GTJason DaskalosDodge Viper12Mechanical
    2829TCTristan HerbertLexus IS3005Mechanical
    2923TCDevin CatesVolkswagen GTI4Mechanical
    3019TCGreg ShafferScion tC0Accident
    3125TCShea HolbrookHonda Civic Si0Accident
    3233TCEric MeyerMazda RX-80Mechanical
    339GTTomy DrissiChevrolet Corvette0Did Not Start

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