• 23-JUN-2014

Kia Racing Scores Double Victory at Road America to Retake Pirelli World Challenge Driver and Manufacturer Points Leads at Midseason

Kia Racing's doubleheader debut at Road America this weekend turned into a double victory as Nic Jönsson scored back-to-back wins in rounds seven and eight of the 16-race 2014 Pirelli World Challenge (PWC) season. Jönsson and Kia Racing teammate Mark Wilkins finished one-two in round seven at the 4.048-mile road course on Friday. The two wins catapulted Jönsson into the Grand Touring Sport (GTS) class Driver Championship lead with Wilkins second by just one point, and Kia reclaimed the lead in the GTS Manufacturer Championship, ahead of Ford, Porsche, Chevrolet, Nissan and Aston Martin.

"When Kia first approached us about racing back in 2010, they said they wanted to change people's perceptions about the brand and the performance and durability of their cars," said Jönsson, who returned from contesting the famed 24 Hours of Le Mans just prior to the Road America weekend. "Well, I can't think of a better way to showcase the quality of the U.S.-built* Kia Optima than to outrun some of the world's best twice in the same weekend!"

Qualifying for Friday's race was cancelled due to heavy rain, so the starting grid was set by championship points coming into the weekend, which meant Wilkins started second and Jönsson fourth. Jönsson darted into the lead on the first lap, and Wilkins quickly tucked in behind him. Wilkins posted the fastest lap of the race, and the two never looked back during the 50-minute contest, scoring Kia's first one-two victory since 2012, the Korean brand's first season in the PWC.