SRT Viper Cup Series presented by Pennzoil Ultra heads to Road Atlanta for rounds 1 and 2.
The 2012 SRT Viper Cup Series presented by Pennzoil Ultra season gets underway this weekend at Road Atlanta. Teams will compete at five challenging road courses in 2012 with each venue hosting two spec-series races. The series features the 2010 Dodge Viper ACR-X – the special-edition model of America’s ultimate sports car.
The SRT Viper Cup Series, formerly the Dodge Viper Cup Series, is entering its third year of competition. The events are again sanctioned by the North America Road Racing Association (NARRA). In addition to Road Atlanta, the series will visit Road America (Elkhart Lake, Wis.), Virginia International Raceway (Alton, Va.), Monticello Motor Club (Monticello, N.Y.) and Watkins Glen International (Watkins Glen, N.Y.).
The series contingency program, sponsored by SRT, Mopar® and Michelin, the official tire of the series, provides payouts to the top-10 drivers at each race. Mopar vouchers are awarded as credit toward the purchase of Mopar parts and accessories. Michelin Tire Bucks serve as credit toward the purchase of Michelin tires.
The season begins with a revised rule package. Qualifying has been eliminated for the five scheduled Sunday events. Instead, the Sunday race fields will be set in reverse order of finish from the previous day.
"The SRT Viper Cup Series continues to offer a fantastic way for road-racing enthusiasts to compete in our ultimate American sports car," said Ralph Gilles – President and CEO, SRT and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC. "The 2010 Dodge Viper ACR-X is designed and built specifically for the race track by taking all the performance attributes of Viper to an even higher level for a wide range of drivers starting with the grassroots racer all the way up to the professional. And with the rule changes for the 2012 season such as the inverted race field for Sunday races along with the continuation of our celebrity driver program, the next chapter of Viper racing looks to be better than ever."
The popular celebrity driver program returns this season at all five venues. Set to battle the 2.54-mile, 12-turn Road Atlanta track will be author Burt Levy and pro football player/wrestler/actor Bill Goldberg. Their winnings will be donated directly to the official charity of the series – the National Breast Cancer Coalition. Donations will be made following each of the 10 races.
"We are exceedingly grateful to the SRT brand for selecting the National Breast Cancer Coalition as the official charity for its SRT Viper Cup Series in 2012," said Fran Visco, President of the National Breast Cancer Coalition. "These grassroots racing efforts play an important role in helping bring more national attention and support to Breast Cancer Deadline 2020®, our strategic plan of action to end breast cancer by January 1, 2020."
|40||David Pintaric||Canfield, Ohio|
|8||Jim Booth||Charleston, S.C.|
|86||Ross Murray (practice only)||Marina del Ray, Calif.|
|84||Kurt Solberger||Dana Point, Calif.|
|13||Trevor Nelson||Wimberley, Texas|
|18||Todd Nelson||Buda, Texas|
|26||Marc Montour||Blainville, Quebec|
|7||Louis-Philippe Montour||Saint-Donat, Quebec|
|37||Eric Galerne||Houston, Texas|
|33||Ben Keating||Port Lavaca, Texas|
|3||David Mazyck||Gainesville, Fla.|
|64||David Decker||Parkland, Fla.|
52 Bill Goldberg Not Available
53 Burt Levy Westchestire, Ill.
Friday, April 13
9:30 a.m. – SRT Viper Cup Practice (first of five 30-minute practice sessions)
Saturday, April 14
10:20 a.m. – SRT Viper Cup Qualifying
1:05 p.m. – SRT Viper Cup Race (40 minutes)
1:50 p.m. – Trophy Presentation
Sunday, April 15
2:00 p.m. – SRT Viper Cup Race (40 minutes)
2:55 p.m. – Trophy Presentation
Series Contingency Program
|Driver Finish||Cash Awarded||Mopar Voucher||Michelin Tire Bucks||Total|
The 2012 SRT Viper Cup Series champion will win an additional $10,000 cash award.
The 'Ultimate' Special-Edition Viper
The 2010 Dodge Viper ACR-X combines the best performance attributes of the record-setting, street-legal Dodge Viper American Club Racer (ACR) and the safety equipment of championship-winning Dodge Viper Competition Coupe. Powered by the SRT-developed 8.4-liter V-10 engine and equipped with factory headers and a low-restriction exhaust system, the Viper ACR-X produces 640 horsepower (40 more than the production model) and 605 lb.-ft. of torque (45 more than the production model).
The suspension also is tuned and upgraded specifically for on-track usage with unique springs, two-way adjustable shocks and adjustable sway bar links.
Curb weight is a full 160 pounds lighter (compared with the standard-2010 production Viper) to take on even the most challenging road course. Additional aerodynamic upgrades, including quad-dive planes and underbody ducts, improve downforce while enhancing stability and significantly improving grip in high-speed cornering.
Similar to the Dodge Viper Competition Coupe, the 2010 Viper ACR-X contains factory-installed safety equipment such as a factory-designed roll cage, fire suppression system, fuel cell and race seat. Additional racing components, including a transmission cooler, rear differential cooling system, unique front rotors with larger surface area and improved brake cooling via scoops in the front fascia, are added to meet the significant durability and reliability requirements for on-track competition.
Only 50 units of the 2010 Dodge Viper ACR-X were built and all have been sold.
Viper Racing Heritage
The Dodge Viper has enjoyed a successful racing heritage that began in 1996 with the original Viper racing entry, the GTS-R, which earned five international GT championships and the 1997-1999 FIA GT championships. It also posted an amazing overall win at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in 2000 – the first for a production-based American car.
Viper finished one-two at The 24 Hours of LeMans in GTS class in three consecutive years: 1998 – 2000 and also captured GTS class and driver’s championships in the American Le Mans Series in 1999 along with the Series class, manufacturer’s and driver’s championships in 2000
The Dodge Viper Competition Coupe, introduced in 2003, delivered the next chapter of that history with its coupe-shaped carbon/Kevlar body and a track-ready chassis, based on the Dodge Viper SRT10®. The Viper Competition Coupe has continued the on-track prowess by capturing the 2004 SCCA Speed World Challenge GT title, championships in Formula D Drifting series in 2004 and 2006 and the British GT Championship in 2007 and 2008.
In 2010, Ryan Schimsk of Austin, Texas, captured the inaugural Dodge Viper Cup series championship by virtue of his five race wins and strong finishes in the other five races of no worse than fourth. Series regulars Ben Keating (Victoria, Texas) and Keith Verges (Dallas) finished second and third, respectively.
Keating captured the 2011 Dodge Viper Cup series championship by winning four races and seven pole positions. His championship run was not complete until the final race of the season at Daytona. Jeff Courtney and series rookie, A.J. Morgan finished second and third, respectively, in the season standings.
North American Road Racing Association and Viper Days
The SRT Viper Cup Series is one of four separate series (including the US GT Championship, Whelen US TimeTrial Championship, and US Performance Driver Education) sanctioned by NARRA and Viper Days, which plans to hold eight event weekends in 2012.