2001 was the fifth season for the highly successful Canada GT Challenge Cup series.
Sanctioned by ASN Canada, the championship draws a wide array of high powered Grand Touring cars and the attention of fans.
Helping the series attract competitors is a healthy prize fund. The winner of each contest receives a cheque for $6,000, the runner-up earns $5,000 and third-place collects $4,000. The remainder of the payout is on a sliding scale, with the last-place finisher receiving $1,000. There is also an end of season championship fund. The driver collecting the most points is paid $30,000. Second place in the title chase earns $20,000 and third-place in the final standings is worth $10,000.
Vehicles eligible to compete in the series included FIA GT, Professional Sportscar GTS & GT, Sports Car Club of America Improved Touring, GT1, GT2 & Trans Am, plus ASA Stock Cars. Sports Racers, ground effect cars and Showroom Stock vehicles are not permitted to compete in the Canada GT Challenge Cup series.
The most significant change for the 2001 season was the elimination of the GT2 category. Any debate about fast cars ‘sand-bagging’ so that they could collect GT2 points and win the class title ended.
All races are one-hour in length and require a mandatory one-minute pit-stop. For teams that use two drivers, one-minute is sufficient time to make the change. Competitors driving solo can remain in the car during the stop. Re-fueling is not allowed.
The events are contested during CASC Ontario Region weeks or in conjunction with major events at Mosport International Raceway. The Canada GT Challenge Cup season kicks off on April 26 at Mosport International Raceway during the BARC Grand Prix of Ontario. This is followed by two more events at Mosport – the BEMC Spring Trophy Races and the Victoria Day Trans-Am Weekend. Round four is the series’ first of three visits to Shannonville Motorsport Park. On June 24, the championship returns to Mosport for the CASCAR 250 Weekend. The next two events are held at Shannonville. The BARC Canadian Touring Trophy at Mosport event hosts round eight for the series. On August 18th, the championship competes at Mosport as a support series for the American Le Mans Series. The final three rounds will be conducted at Mosport, with the finale taking place on October 2.
The 2001 Canada GT Challenge Cup’s penultimate round was held during the British Empire Motor Club’s Indian Summer Trophy weekend. Teams would complete on Mosport International Raceway’s ten-turn 2.459-mile road circuit for one-hour.
|The start of the penultimate round for the 2001 Canada GT Challenge Cup at Mosport International Raceway. Leading the field of twenty-nine competitors into corner one is the pole-winning Stealth B6 of TMI Racing’s Brent Gates. Falling in behind Gates is the championship leader and third-fastest qualifier, James Holtom, in the No. 32 Chevrolet Corvette. Next to Holtom is the Porsche of Klaus Bytzek.|
|And, then there were three. The championship battle entering round ten was between the points leader, James Holtom, defending champ, Klaus Bytzek and Brent Gates. Bytzek qualified on the outside of the front row in the No.00 BMS Race Team Porsche 911 GT1 EVO. At the start of the contest, he lost a position to James Holtom. Bytzek fought back, passed Holtom and took the lead from Brent Gates for the win.|
|The championship points leader, James Holtom, was still having oiling issues with the No. 32 Chevrolet Corvette. However, he still managed to qualify third fastest for round eleven. On the first lap of the contest, he passed Klaus Byztek for second, but Byztek would retake the position. When the course went yellow with twenty-eight minutes remaining and ended under the caution period, Holtom was in second-place.|
|Brent Gates had a slim chance of capturing this year’s Canada GT Challenge Cup title, but the possibility was still there. The TMI Racing team tested some changes to the No. 06 Stealth B6, which allowed him to grab the pole for the seventh time this season. At the start of the race, Gates shot into the lead but was reeled in by Klaus Bytzek and James Holtom. With the contest ending under yellow, he finished in third place.|
|Any chance for a late-race shoot-out between the three leading contenders for this year’s Canada GT Challenge Cup title ended with twenty-eight minutes remaining in the contest. At the halfway point of the event, Bentley Hammer driving the No. 98 Phil Strudwick Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro slid off the track in corner one. Track personnel was unable to remove the Camaro before the end of the race.|
|As usual, Charlie Webster qualified near the front of the grid in fourth place. This was quite an accomplishment as the crew had to repair the No. 95 CJ Webster Chevrolet Camaro after an accident in the practice session. Webster was competitive early in the race, but problems developed with the Camaro and he fell down the lap chart. Webster would cross the finish line in twenty-fourth place.|
|FINISH||START||DRIVER||CAR / ENTRANT||LAPS||RETIREMENTS|
|1||2||Klaus Bytzek||Porsche 911 GT1 Evo / BMS Race Team||30||-|
|2||3||James Holtom||Chevrolet Corvette / Georgian Bay Motorsports||30||-|
|3||1||Brent Gates||Stealth B6 / TMI Racing||30||-|
|4||7||Keith Carter||Chevrolet Camaro / Strudwick Motorsports||30||-|
|5||9||Ahmad Khodkar||Datsun 240Z / Quest-Tech||30||-|
|6||12||Steve Hummel||Chevrolet Corvette / Tomsoft Racing||29||-|
|7||11||Phillips / DiFrancesco||Mazda RX-7||29||-|
|8||15||Brad Flowers||Porsche 911 Super Cup / Info Vision||29||-|
|9||5||Mark Swain||Noble Ultima GTR / TMI Racing||29||-|
|10||13||Larry Barcza||Chevrolet Camaro||29||-|
|11||19||Jim Harrison||Porsche 911 Turbo / Longhill Energy||29||-|
|12||20||Ulrich Furtmair||Porsche 911 Turbo||29||-|
|13||21||Fernand Leblanc||Porsche 911 Turbo / MCL||29||-|
|14||25||Jacques Villeneuve||Porsche 911 Turbo/APF Villeneuve.com||29||-|
|15||17||Jay Fieger||Chevrolet Monte Carlo / Marathon Graphics Supply||29||-|
|16||28||Jeff Pacey||Mazda RX-7 / Kitchenimics||29||-|
|17||14||Peter Botsinis||BMW M3 / PJC Autoworks Ltd||29||-|
|18||30||Tom Konvalina||Porsche 968 Turbo / TK Griffin||28||-|
|19||29||Marcus Glarner||BMW 3.0 CSL||28||-|
|20||26||Gunter Schmidt||Volkswagen Beetle / Greenbelt Motors||28||-|
|21||22||Jacques Genereux||Porsche 911 Turbo||28||-|
|22||18||Torsten Krueger||Chevrolet Monte Carlo / Stoney Creek Mould||27||-|
|23||32||Vito Scavone||Porsche 911 RSR||27||-|
|24||4||Charlie Webster||Chevrolet Camaro / C.J. Webster||23||-|
|25||8||Bentley Hammer||Chevrolet Camaro / Strudwick Motorsports||20||Did Not Finish|
|26||10||Gord Vipond||Chevrolet Camaro||20||Did Not Finish|
|27||24||Allan DeWolfe||BMW 325i / Eurotec||19||Did Not Finish|
|28||27||Dave Diedrick||Toyota Corolla||15||Did Not Finish|
|29||23||Mike Palladino||Chevrolet Corvette / Four Way Auto||3||Did Not Finish|
|-||16||Jerry Simmons||Ford Mustang / Tru North Racing||42||Did Not Start|
|-||31||Matt Coveart / Martin Gray||Mazda RX-7||39||Did Not Start|
|-||6||Blaise Csida||Chevrolet Camaro / New York Fries||41||Did Not Start|
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