Team Cadillac is looking to carry the momentum of their team and driver championships in 2012 and 2013 into the upcoming Pirelli World Championship season. Drivers Johnny O’Connell and Andy Pilgrim will face stiff competition in the 25th World Challenge season ever, after fresh faces and new manufacturers have joined the list of competitors.
O’Connell will be hungry to defend his driver championships, which he earned in 2012 and 2013, while teammate Andy Pilgrim will also be looking to put a driver’s title under his belt. This year’s race series sees the addition of a new stop, Barber Motorsport Park in Birmingham, Ala., which will join the returning World Challenge races, including those in Detroit, Long Beach, Ohio and Toronto.
“It has been a busy off season. I’ve spent a lot of time in Phoenix at the Bondurant School and took a trip to China for business development as well doing some driver coaching, which also helps to keep my skills honed behind the wheel, said O’Connell.
The racing veteran also commented on the new manufacturers joining this year’s grid, which include world renowned companies like Porsche, Lamborghini, McLaren and Ferrari.
“I think it is great that we are getting a lot of new brands in the series. That shows that the Pirelli World Challenge Series is a destination. There are strong cars, strong drivers and strong teams. The cars that are coming in are leading edge sports cars. Exactly who Cadillac wants to compete against,” said O’Connell.
Pilgrim echoed O’Connell’s statements, welcoming the new group of manufacturers and cars, but recognizing the challenge Cadillac Racing and the CTSV.R face in 2014.
“I think all of the new entries and manufacturers is all positive for the series. With two prime sports car racing series, I think the World Challenge Series is really a great place for teams to race. The new cars will be interesting for us as drivers and especially for the fans,” Pilgrim said. “Cadillac has done an amazing job over the years of competing, this being the fourth year for the car. We will have our work cut out for us to keep up with those FIA GT3 spec cars. We know that right out of the box they will increase the speed of the GT Class.”
Catch the first leg of the Pirelli World Challenge season at the Cadillac Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 28-30. The race will be aired on NBC Sports Network on Sunday, April 6 at 5:30 p.m., or it can be streamed online on the World Challenge website.