The 2017 Pirelli World Challenge season is the twenty-eighth consecutive year for the championship. There are eleven race weekends. The Touring Car category title chase kicks-off in April at Virginia International Raceway. This event is followed by races at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Lime Rock Park and the Utah Motorsport Complex. The penultimate rounds are held a Circuit of the Americas with the finale taking place at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in mid-October.

As in the previous year, there were three Touring categories:

  • Touring Car (TC) – This class is for smaller sedans and sports cars which are allowed some performance modifications. These front or rear-wheel-drive vehicles may be powered by turbocharged or normally aspirated engines. Examples of vehicles competing in this category include: Honda Accord, Mazda MX-5, Porsche Boxster, BMW235iR and Audi RS 3 LMS.
  • Touring Car A (TCA) – Many of the cars competing in this class are the same as those found in Touring Car. What sets them apart is the minimum amount of modifications that can be made – most changes are to improve the safety of the vehicles. Using turbocharged or normally aspirated powerplants, these cars produce between 160 and 185-horsepower.
  • Touring Car B (TCB) - The slowest of all the World Challenge categories is based on the Sports Car Club of America’s B-Spec class. Examples of vehicles competing in this category include: Chevrolet Sonic, Honda Fit, Kia Rio, Mazda 2 and Mini Cooper. The horsepower range is 100 to 110.

    Rounds seven and eight of the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car season took at the Utah Motorsports Campus. Forty-three drivers were scheduled to compete in the two forty-minute races around the fifteen-turn 3.048-mile ‘Outer Course’. The event, titled, The Grand Prix of Utah was presented by Security National Mortgage.

  • The first lap of round seven for the Pirelli World Challenge Touring Cars. Leading the way through ‘The Attitudes’ is the third fastest qualifier and eventual winner, Greg Liefooghe driving the No. 20 BMW235iR. Behind Liefooghe is the Nissan 370Z of the second place starter, Tony Rivera. Trailing Rivera is the reigning Touring Car Champion, Toby Grahovec in the Classic BMW sponsored BMW M235iR.
    There were nineteen of the new BMW M235iR models entered at Utah but the quickest was the Stephen Cameron Racing entry driven by Greg Liefooghe. Liefooghe qualified third for round seven but when the pole-sitter, Paul Holton went wide in turn one on the first lap he took the lead and stayed out front for all sixteen laps. In the second race of the day, Liefooghe led flag-to-flag for his third win of the season.
    Returning to the TCA category after a three- year absence was Shea Holbrook. Holbrook was competing in a 2017 Honda Civic Si. She started the weekend by putting the Shea Racing Honda on the class pole. In the Saturday’s first contest, Holbrook came out on top after having a spirited battle with the reigning TCA champion, Elivan Goulart. A problem in race two forced her to retire on lap-15 – she was classified ninth in class.
    In round eight, series newcomer, Kenny Murillo driving the Murillo Racing Mazda Global MX-5 Cup Car started twenty-ninth overall but on the Touring Car A pole. During the forty-minute race, Murillo was passed by Eric Powell but was given the victory when Powell’s Scion was disqualified for a technical infraction. Earlier in the day, Murillo qualified third and finished fourth in the Touring Car A category.
    It was evident from the beginning of the weekend that the top honours in the TCB class would be decided between the Tech Sport Racing teammates, P.J. Groenke and Canaan O’Connell. Groenke qualified the No. 25 Chevrolet Sonic second to O’Connell in round seven but was the leader after sixteen laps of racing and scored his first series victory. He started the final contest on the pole but finished behind O’Connell in second.
    Despite a bad crash in race two at Virginia International Raceway, where he did not score any points, Canadian Nick Wittmer was second in the Touring Car standings. In the weekend’s first race, Wittmer qualified fourth but slid down the lap chart and was ninth at the checkered flag. Later that day, he was gridded seventh but the first corner incident allowed him to improve his position and capture the runner-spot on the podium.
    The weekend’s first race started with an incident in corner one which eliminated five cars. History repeated itself in round eight when the Nissan 370Z of Tony Rivera, Jason Clunie in a BMW M235iR and the point’s leader, Paul Holton driving an Audi made contact. Rivera and Clunie spun – Rivera was hit by the Audi of Travis Washay and Samantha Tan in a BMW M235iR tagged Clunie. Rivera, Washay and Tan retired from the race.
    It was a difficult weekend for the Touring Car point’s leader, Paul Holton. Holton driving the Compass 360 Racing prepared Audi RS 3 LMS Club Sport qualified on the pole for round seven but went wide at corner one on the first lap and lost a number of positions. He worked his way through the field and finished tenth. In race two, Holton took an eleventh place after he sustained damage in the turn one incident.
    The 2017 Touring Car B podium for round eight at the Utah Motorsports Campus. On the top step is Canaan O’Connell – this was O’Connell’s fourth class win of the season. Taking the runner-up spot was his teammate and round seven victor, P.J. Groenke. The final position on the rostrum belonged to Honda Fit driver, Jasper Drengler who scored his best finish of the season.
    The No. 74 S.A.C. Racing Mazda MX-5 was driven by Matthew Fassnacht. Fassnacht took the Touring Car A honours in the first two rounds at Virginia International Raceway. Entering the Utah weekend, he trailed his teammate and championship leader, Elivan Goulart by six points. Fassnacht scored second and fifth-place finishes in races seven and eight – which gave him the lead in the title chase.
    Canaan O’Connell won round one and the two races held at Lime Rock Park in a Tech Sport Racing Chevrolet Sonic. In the weekends, first race at the Utah Motorsports Campus he qualified on the pole but was passed by his teammate, P.J. Groenke and settled for the runner-up spot. The teammates switched the qualifying and finishing order in round eight – O’Connell captured his fourth Touring Car B victory of the season.
    Defending Touring Car A champion, Elivan Goulart was at the top of the points standings as teams entered rounds seven and eight at the Utah Motorsports Campus. Goulart’s first two wins of the season came at his home track – Lime Rock Park. In the first race, he shared the front row with the class pole-sitter, Shea Holbrook and finished second. Goulart started fourth for round eight but retired after just eight laps.
    This TCA class Toyota TMG 86 Cup Car was originally on display at the SEMA show. It was constructed by the German division of Toyota to compete in a single make series. At Utah, it was driven by veteran sports car racer, Craig Stanton. The Toyota made a promising debut – qualifying fourth in round seven and captured the last position on the podium. In the next event, Stanton started sixth in TCA and finished fourth.
    It was a good weekend for the defending Touring Car champion, Toby Grahovec. Racing the Classic BMW sponsored BMW M235iR, Grahovec qualified fifth for the weekend’s first event. At the conclusion of forty-minutes of racing, he had moved up the order and captured the runner-up position – his best result to date. In race two, Grahovec was gridded fifth again and earned the final spot on the podium.
    The 2017 round eight Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car podium. In the center, scoring his second victory of the weekend and third of the season is Greg Liefooghe. On the left side of the rostrum is the runner-up Nick Wittmer. The final spot on the podium is occupied by the reigning class champion, Toby Grahovec.

    13TCGreg LiefoogheStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR16
    25TCToby GrahovecClassic BMW / BMW M235iR16
    38TCAnthony MagagnoliRooster Hall Racing / BMW M235iR16
    46TCJacob RuudWinding Road Team TFB / BMW M235iR16
    57TCJayson ClunieClassic BMW / BMW M235iR16
    62TCTony RiveraBrass Monkey Racing / Nissan 370Z16
    715TCKarl WittmerHonda Ste-Rose Racing / Honda Accord16
    89TCMason FilippiWinding Road Team TFB / BMW M235iR16
    94TCNick WittmerST Racing / BMW M235iR16
    101TCPaul HoltonC360R / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport16
    1111TCAristotle BaloghStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR16
    1217TCStefan SajicZima Motorsports / BMW M235iR16
    1310TCTravis WashayIndian Summer Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport16
    1418TCSteve BurnsIan Lacy Racing / Ford Mustang16
    1521TCChris OhmachtClassic BMW / BMW M235iR16
    1620TCMax FedlerMax Fedler Racing / BMW M235iR16
    1713TCJustin RaphaelClassic BMW / BMW M235iR16
    1823TCJeff KearlRearden Racing / BMW M235iR16
    1926TCChetan PuranikZima Motorsports / BMW M235iR16
    2024TCDaren JorgensenRearden Racing / BMW M235iR16
    2127TCGreg WarnockRearden Racing / BMW M235iR16
    2228TCAndrew McCubbinsRearden Racing / BMW M235iR16
    2325TCSamantha TanST Racing / BMW M235iR16
    2429TCAShea HolbrookShea Racing / Honda Civic Si16
    2530TCAElivan GoulartS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup16
    2632TCACraig StantonDG-Spec Racing / Toyota TMG 86 Cup Car16
    2731TCAKenny MurilloMurillo Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup16
    2833TCAMatthew FassnachtS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-516
    2934TCATom O'GormanShea Racing / Honda Civic Si16
    3035TCABreton WilliamsTech Sport Racing / Scion FR-S16
    3127TCADaniel WilliamsS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup16
    3239TCADaniel MoenS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-515
    3342TCBP.J. GroenkeTech Sport Racing / Chevrolet Sonic15
    3441TCBCanaan O'ConnellTech Sport Racing / Chevrolet Sonic15
    3544TCBJasper DrenglerDrengler Racing / Honda Fit15
    3643TCBJake PipalJake Pipal Racing / Honda Fit15
    3716TCAnthony GeraciS.A.C. Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport11
    NC36TCAJeff SextonWinding Road Team / Mazda MX-5 Cup7
    NC38TCAPaul WhitingGlory Racing / Honda Civic Si1
    NC12TCJason CoupalBERG Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport0
    NC14TCRobert NimkoffAutoTechnic Racing / BMW M235iR0
    NC19TCRodrigo SalesStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR0
    NC22TCHenry SchmittStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR0

    12TCGreg LiefoogheStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR18
    27TCNick WittmerST Racing / BMW M235iR18
    35TCToby GrahovecClassic BMW / BMW M235iR18
    43TCAristotle BaloghStephen Cameron Racing / BMW M235iR18
    513TCMason FilippiWinding Road Team TFB / BMW M235iR18
    68TCAnthony MagagnoliRooster Hall Racing / BMW M235iR18
    710TCKarl WittmerHonda Ste-Rose Racing / Honda Accord18
    814TCSteve BurnsIan Lacy Racing / Ford Mustang18
    920TCJeff KearlRearden Racing / BMW M235iR18
    1011TCJustin RaphaelClassic BMW / BMW M235iR18
    111TCPaul HoltonC360R / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport18
    1218TCDaren JorgensenRearden Racing / BMW M235iR18
    1326TCJason CoupalBERG Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport18
    1416TCMax FedlerMax Fedler Racing / BMW M235iR18
    158TCAnthony GeraciS.A.C. Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport18
    1612TCStefan SajicZima Motorsports / BMW M235iR18
    179TCJacob RuudWinding Road Team TFB / BMW M235iR18
    1823TCAndrew McCubbinsRearden Racing / BMW M235iR18
    1921TCGreg WarnockRearden Racing / BMW M235iR18
    2015TCChris OhmachtClassic BMW / BMW M235iR18
    214TCJayson ClunieClassic BMW / BMW M235iR18
    2229TCAKenny MurilloMurillo Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup18
    2330TCAMatthew FassnachtS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-517
    2434TCATom O'GormanShea Racing / Honda Civic Si17
    2533TCACraig StantonDG-Spec Racing / Toyota TMG 86 Cup Car17
    2637TCAJeff SextonWinding Road Team / Mazda MX-5 Cup17
    2736TCADaniel WilliamsS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup17
    2835TCABreton WilliamsTech Sport Racing / Scion FR-S17
    2938TCADaniel MoenS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-517
    3042TCBCanaan O'ConnellTech Sport Racing / Chevrolet Sonic16
    3141TCBP.J. GroenkeTech Sport Racing / Chevrolet Sonic16
    3245TCBJasper DrenglerDrengler Racing / Honda Fit16
    3344TCBJake PipalJake Pipal Racing / Honda Fit16
    3431TCAShea HolbrookShea Racing / Honda Civic Si14
    3527TCRobert NimkoffAutoTechnic Racing / BMW M235iR13
    NC32TCAElivan GoulartS.A.C. Racing / Mazda MX-5 Cup8
    NC24TCChetan PuranikZima Motorsports / BMW M235iR4
    NC6TCTony RiveraBrass Monkey Racing / Nissan 370Z1
    NC17TCTravis WashayIndian Summer Racing / Audi RS 3 LMS Clubsport0
    NC19TCSamantha TanST Racing / BMW M235iR0
    EX37TCAEric PowellTech Sport Racing / Scion FR-S0

    Copyright Notice:
    All content (photographs and text) appearing on this website are the exclusive property of © and are protected under International copyright laws. The subject matter on this website may not be reproduced, copied, stored or manipulated.

    © Copyright 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017

    Return to home page.