The International GT season finale at Circuit of the Americas provided exciting racing on track, however all eyes were also on the Mission Foods GT3 Cup Trophy Championship. Going into the final race weekend, JOHN MAURO led the series championship by a close 5 points.
Mauro, the 2016 Champion, was looking to repeat in 2017 winning both the enduro and second Sprint race in the Porsche 3.6 liter competition on Sunday. However, THOMAS PANK, who entered the weekend second in the points championship, swept all three races on the weekend to score enough points to claim the 2017 Mission Foods GT3 Cup Trophy Championship.
PANK, whose Porsche is race prepared by Ultra Performance out of Winder, GA, participated in all but one International GT event this season, debuting with the series at the season opener in Sebring.
Commenting on the series, Pank said, “The 2017 GT3 championship in the Ultra Performance / BaySaver Technologies Porsche has been some the most enjoyable racing I have ever experienced. The International GT Series, raced on the best tracks, at ideal times of the year, with the fundamental objective of making it enjoyable for all. The competition is serious, the racing is clean, and Ken and Julie have done a fantastic job of carrying Bill Riddell’s dream forward.
“We get awesome tires and support from Pirelli, excellent fuel from Sunoco, and sponsorship from Mission Foods, BRM Chronographs, Pacifico Costa Rica, and RacerInk. At the same time we are raising awareness for the TACP Military Service Charity.
“We had some of the toughest on track competition, we went door to door, bumper to bumper for lap after lap and I came out smiling for days after each weekend. The off-track camaraderie was second to none, as everyone had the same objective….simply have fun! I’d like to thank everyone who made this all possible and all the competitors for a great season. I hope to see all of you next year.”
Finishing the 2017 season at COTA, Pank would enjoy another proud moment as his 20-year old son, Lukas, who began racing with International GT during the Road America event, would share the podium for the final Sprint race of the season.
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