2005 was the fifth consecutive year of the Grand American Road Racing’s Grand Am Cup Series for American and Foreign sports cars and sedans.

There was a significant restructuring of the classes in 2004. The season debuted with a single Grand Sport (GS) and Street Tuner (ST) class.

  • Grand Sport (GS): The quicker of the two classes - the group features the larger displacement engines as well as smaller four-cylinder motors with forced induction systems. The power-plants produce between 350 and 405-horsepower. Minimum weights range between 2,730 – 3,250-pounds, which is dependent on the motor configuration and displacement. The top speed for a Grand Sport car is approximately 160-mph. This class includes cars such as the Acura NSX, Cadillac CTS-V, BMW M3, Pontiac Firebird, Ford Mustang, Nissan 350Z and Porsche 996.
  • Sport Touring (ST): The smaller displacement cars compete in this class in which engines typically produce between 170 and 240-horsepower. The top speed of a Sport Touring car is approximately 135-mph. Popular vehicles found in this group are the Acura RSX-S, Mazda RX-8, BMW Z3, BMW 330i, Chevrolet Cobalt SS and Mini Cooper S.

The cars competing in the series are relatively unchanged from their road-going versions – modifications are mandated mainly for safety – roll cages, window nets, etc. They also used spec DOT-approved tires produced by Hoosier. Based on performance potential, the cars are placed in the Grand Sport or Sport Touring group.

The 2005 season consists of eleven race weekends and starts in February at Daytona International Speedway. New for this year is a Grand Sport only race in Santo Domingo. Returning to the United States, teams travel to California Speedway in early April. At the end of the month, the series competes at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Then there is a trip to the East Coast for race weekends at Watkins Glen International, Mosport International Raceway, Barber Motorsports Park, Trois-Rivieres (which would hold events for the Grand Sport and Sport Touring classes) and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The penultimate rounds take place at Phoenix International Raceway with the Twin 200s. The Grand Sport and Street Tuner teams will compete in separate races. While the finale is held in early October at Virginia International Raceway.

The Chemung Canal Trust 200 was held at Watkins Glen International on the 3.337-mile eleven-turn road course. This would be round four for the Grand Am Cup Sport Touring competitors and race five for the Grand Sport teams as they had an additional event in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republican.

Seventy-four Grand Am Cup competitors line-up on Watkins Glen International’s front straight for the Chemung Canal Trust 200. On the pole is the Turner Motorsport BMW M3 driven by Justin Marks and Bill Auberlen. Starting beside the Turner BMW is the Race Prep Motorsports Porsche 996. Sharing the Porsche were Spencer Pumpelly, Tim Gaffney and Mike Pickett. In the second row are the Doncaster Porsche and Powell Cadillac.
Justin Marks captured his fourth pole position in five events at Watkins Glen. Marks and his driving partner, Bill Auberlen, had demonstrated the speed of the Turner Motorsport BMW but their results to date were mixed. At the Chemung Canal Trust 200, Marks jumped into an early lead. After pitting for the driver change, Auberlen charged through the field and grabbed first place with three laps remaining to claim their second victory of 2005.
New York age requirements prevented 17-year-old Jamie Holtom from sharing the No. 00 Chevrolet Cobalt SS with his father, Jim. As a result, the team drafted Andy Lally to share the Cobalt with the senior Holtom. The car started fifth but was in contention during the contest. Late in the event, many of the top Sport Touring competitors were caught out by oil on the track. Lally and Holtom avoided the trouble and won the category.
Scott Maxwell and David Empringham won the previous round at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. During the qualifying session at Watkins Glen International, Maxwell was fifth fastest in the Multimatic Motorsports Ford Mustang. Empringham drove the final stint and was in the lead when Bill Auberlen passed him with just three laps to go. Although they didn’t win, they took over the lead in the Grand Sport Driver standings.
Race Prep Motorsports entered three Porsche 996. Sharing the No. 18 Porsche were Spencer Pumpelly, Tim Gaffney and Mike Pickett. Pumpelly qualified the car and missed securing the pole position by a margin of 0.450-seconds. The trio fell out of contention early in the Chemung Canal Trust 200 and were two-laps behind the leaders at the checkered flag – finishing forty-first overall and thirtieth in the Grand Sport category.
The overall and Grand Sport class winners of the Chemung Canal Trust 200 at Watkins Glen International. On the left side is Justin Marks and beside him is sports car racing veteran, Bill Auberlen. This was their second victory of the season. The first came in March at Santo Domingo, Dominican Republican. Their results in the other events were disappointing – a low of thirty-fifth at Daytona and a high of fifth place at Fontana.
Scoring their best result of the season were Tom Lepper and Bo Roach. The pair shared the driving duties on the No. 32 Franklin American Mortgage sponsored Chevrolet Cobalt SS. The Cobalt started forty-second overall and second in Sport Touring. After leading a number of laps, the pair was second at the end of the race. In fact, three of the five top finishers were competing in the Chevrolet Cobalt SS.
Finishing third overall were Canadians, Greg Wilkins and David Lacey. Their No. 17 Porsche 996 was prepared by the very successful Doncaster Racing team. The Porsche was gridded third overall for the start of the Chemung Canal Trust 200. During his stint, Wilkins led a total of nine-laps. At the end of the race, they could not hold off Bill Auberlen or match the pace of the Multimatic Mustang and finished third.
Another Sport Touring team delivering their best performance of the season was the No. 20 Nuzzo Motorsports Mini Cooper S. Sharing the Mini were Steve Pattee and team owner, Tony Nuzzo. The car was well off the pace in qualifying and started seventieth overall and twenty-seventh in class. During the event, they moved through the field and avoided the oil on the track to capture their first podium finish of the season.
In Sport Touring qualifying, it was the usual suspects at the top of the timesheet. Securing the class pole was the Bill Fenton Motorsports Acura RSX-S shared by Bob Endicott and Eric Curran. The Acura won the top spot by a margin of 0.491-seconds and started forty-first overall. But it would not be their day and they retired after completing thirty-laps. The pair recorded their worst result to date – twenty-sixth in class.
The Sport Touring class winners of the Chemung Canal Trust 200 at Watkins Glen International. On the left side is James Holtom and beside him filling in for his son, Jamie is Andy Lally. This was the first class victory of the season for Holtom and Lally. The category point leaders, Will Turner and Don Salama, had a difficult day and finished thirteenth. As a result, Holtom now trailed them by a single marker.

1GSMarks / AuberlenBMW M3Turner Motorsport56
2GSEmpringham / MaxwellFord Mustang GTMultimatic Motorsports56
3GSWilkins / LaceyPorsche 996Doncaster Racing56
4GSMcCalmont / LawPorsche 996Zoom Motorsports56
5GSGaffney / PumpellyPorsche 996Race Prep Motorsports56
6GSMunson / SofronasBMW M3Anchor Racing56
7GSJames / NastasiFord Mustang GTBlackforest Motorsports56
8GSRiddle / WilsonBMW M3Automatic Racing56
9GSThornton / RussellBMW M3Automatic Racing56
10GSKrohn / JonssonPorsche 996Krohn Racing56
11GSSkelton / FosterBMW M3Anchor Racing56
12GSPowell / KnowlesCadillac CTS-VPowell Motorsport56
13GSEllis / BavaroPorsche 997Bodymotion Racing56
14GSSchuitemaker / ZachariasNissan 350ZSchuitemaker Motorsports56
15STHoltom / LallyChevrolet CobaltGeorgian Bay Motorsports56
16STLepper / RoachChevrolet CobaltFranklin American Mortgage56
17GSSahlen / NonnamakerPorsche 996Team Sahlen56
18GSHimes / LinderBMW M3Power Racing Team56
19STPattee / NuzzoMini Cooper SNuzzo Motorsports56
20STMilner / ConnollyBMW 330ciMatt Connolly Motorsports56
21GSFlanagan / StantonPorsche 996Team Sahlen55
22GSMacleod / GorriaranNissan 350ZDWW/GorillaRacing.com55
23GSCamp / LapcevichFord Mustang CobraFrederick Motorsports55
24GSKapudija / PecorariMustang Cobra SVTRehagen Racing / Speedquest55
25GSPlummer / CosmoPorsche 996BGB Motorsports55
26GSSandridge / HeinricyCadillac CTS-VTeam Salad Racing55
27GSGrand / HenzlerPorsche 996Team RPM55
28GSGuindon / CamirandCadillac CTS-VPowell Motorsport55
29GSFinlay / McDowellBMW M3Finlay Motorsports55
30GSBupp / BuppNissan 350ZHamilton Safe Motorsports55
31STMagner / StrubChevrolet CobaltWTF Engineering55
32GSMasessa / LonghiFord Mustang CobraFrederick Motorsports55
33STBecker / HalpinMazda RX-8Southpaw Racing55
34STJohnson / KintziMazda RX-8SpeedSource55
35STSchlesinger / AltenburgMazda RX-8SpeedSource55
36STMoorcones / PoscenteAcura Integra RRadial Motorsports55
37STBisignano / WalkerMazda RX-8SpeedSource55
38STRobinson / Mitchell IIIMazda RX-8Play Therapy Racing55
39GSWortzman / WildenBMW M3Zoom Motorsports54
40GSRosser / MurryPorsche 996Fiorano Racing54
41GSGaffney / Pumpelly / PickettPorsche 996Race Prep Motorsports54
42STValentine / BriodyBMW 330ciMatt Connolly Motorsports54
43GSHennessy / Zogaib / MardenNissan 350ZSchuitemaker Motorsports54
44STSalama / TurnerBMW 330ciCSL Racing54
45STPappas / PfefferBMW 330iTurner Motorsport54
46STFero / SigalMini Cooper SNuzzo Motorsports54
47GSNonnamaker / NonnamakerPorsche 996Team Sahlen53
48GSBosler / FitzgeraldPorsche 996BGB Motorsports53
49GSSeafuse / SeafuseFord Mustang CobraJBS Motorsports53
50STGoulart / ThomsonBMW Z3Compass360/Racing53
51STSchultz / StoddartMazda ProtegeFountain Motorsports53
52GSGue / JeannetteFord Mustang GTMultimatic Motorsports53
53STThornley / SchwartzottAcura TSXKensai Racing53
54STColembie / TuatyBMW Z4TC Kline Racing52
55STAbello / EspenlaubMazda RX-8SpeedSource51
56STEaton / SellersMazda RX-8Southpaw Racing51
57GSZavodsky / AckleyMustang Cobra SVTRehagen Racing49
58STLiebl / Beede / FentonAcura RSX-SBill Fenton Motorsports46
59STGurucharri / AllenMazda RX-8HBAR Motorsports46
60STO'Shaughnessy / O'ShaughnessyBMW Z4TC Kline Racing39
61GSWellon / Ellis / RossiPorsche 996Knobel Racing37
62GSMunson / Scott / ProbertBMW M3Anchor Racing37
63GSKohler / SmithMustang SaleenTF Racing34
64GSKeravich III / TrinklerBMW M3Power Racing Team34
65STCurran / EndicottAcura RSX-SBill Fenton Motorsports30
66STHrymack / Goulart / WehrheimBMW Z3Compass360/Racing30
67GSSandridge / Varde / GalatiCadillac CTS-VTeam Salad Racing29
68GSHainer / Hand / SaidBMW M3Anchor Racing26
69STPhillips / DiedrickNissan Sentra SE-RDEI Racers Group25
70GSMartini / CollinsPorsche 997Synergy Racing17
71GSMason / TurnerMustang Cobra SVTRehagen Racing15
72STHaskell / TremblayMazda RX-8SpeedSource3
73GSGaffney / Pumpelly / PickettPorsche 996Race Prep Motorsports0
74GSRossi / Grande / FoxPorsche 996Knobel Racing0

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