In 2019 the Ferrari Challenge North America crossed the quarter-century mark, with 25 years of racing on North America’s most prestigious circuits. The single-marque championship has always been an attractive springboard for the many drivers aiming to become professionals. Among the various entrants who have made the Challenge famous, many have gone on to establish themselves in Endurance championships, while others have seen their names inscribed in the annals of such legendary races as the 24 Hours of Daytona or the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Ferrari Challenge North America features four classes: the Trofeo Pirelli, the Trofeo Pirelli Am, the Coppa Shell and the Coppa Shell Am, based on the level of competitiveness of drivers.
The previous round at Homestead (Miami) delivered the first championship title to Mark Issa (Ferrari of Atlanta) who clinched the Coppa Shell after an impressive run of 6 wins and 4 runner-up finishes out of 12 races.
The Coppa Shell AM will see a head-to-head between Brad Horstmann (Foreign Cars Italia) in command of the special standings with 130 points and Jay Schreibman (128) from team Cauley Ferrari. Gianni Grilli (95 points) courtesy of Ferrari of Quebec and Eric Marston (94) from Scuderia Corsa – Ferrari of Westlake will have a tough task of staging a comeback.
Trofeo Pirelli also sees a two-horse race between Cooper MacNeil (Scuderia Corsa – Ferrari of Westlake) at the top on 213 points and Benjamin Hites (The Collection) some 9 points adrift. The wide-open result will be anybody’s guess; in the most recent event in Florida, Hites was forced to surrender the leadership due to mechanical issues. The battle will go down to the wire and given that the pair have claimed 11 of the 12 wins this season, the spectacle is guaranteed.
Meanwhile four drivers remain in contention for the Trofeo Pirelli AM crown, with Neil Gehani (Continental Autosports) holding the lead on 150 points, after 4 campaign wins and a further 3 podiums. Close on his heels, 6 points behind, lies Ziad Ghandour (Boardwalk Ferrari), who was capable of winning the jackpot prize in the previous round in Florida (with 2 wins, 2 poles and 2 fastest laps to his name). Following behind, on 138 points, comes Dave Musial (Ferrari of Lake Forest) and further down, on 118, Brent Holden (Ferrari of Newport Beach).