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Kia's Motorsports Program Off to a Rough Start

2760 Views 13 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  Jeremiad

Kia has been promoting its first entry into motorsports in the U.S. in a big way since the Korean automaker first introduced its Forte Koupe race car at the SEMA Show last year. Prior to the green flag at Daytona Speedway, kicking off the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge season (formerly Koni Challenge), Kia was working hard to drum up excitement for its two-car effort. And why shouldn't they, with the vehicles being built by Kinetic and the driver's including such names as Andy Lally and Nic Jönsson in the #10 car.

Well, things didn't go quite as Kia had planned with Lally and Jönsson completing just 25 laps for a dismal 31st place in the ST class. The No. 12 car of Trevor Hopwood and Adam Burrows, a duo which clinched the 2007 Grand Am ST class championship, placed significantly better in 19th, but hardly in the running with average speeds well below the front runners.

Kia's commitment to Grand-Am and to racing isn't likely to be discouraged by the results, however, as the Korean automaker plans to use motorsports to help build the brand into one that is seen as sporty and desirable – particularly by young males.

We'll look to see more from the Kia team in the future with the next Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge taking place March 5-6 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

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still rough to smile with results like that though... really thought they'd have done a lil better...
Considering these are brand new untested vehicles it really isn't a big surprise. Time will tell if they get better...should get better as they tweak the motors, trannys and suspensions. I can't believe there wasn't a serious problem with the #10 car as it shows to have averaged only 44 MPH while the #12 car averaged 86.7. The winning ST class car ran an average 88.9 MPH that's 2.2 MPH slower or faster -- whicher way you look at it. The only Chevy Cobalt turbocharged I saw placed behind both of the Koups so it looks like a bad race day for a lot of teams.
If you're following this...looks like car #10 is in 8th place and car #12 is in 16th place in the July 17 2010 race in New Jersey.
well this has been a big let down for kia's hopes to shine first time out.. but I have a feeling they'll get things dialed in, new race teams take time and as others said the forte is a new car etc.. I'm sure this season for kia will be lots of trial and errors.
but its great to see kia and are little Koup out there on the track :)
between the big dollar crews and the young guys willing and able to push things....
i really think that the kia's are gonna find their way into the spot lights.......
^^^I have no idea...LoL

If I'm reading the weekend results right the number 10 car took 8th place -- that's a top 10! The number 12 car took 16th. The number 10 car's best lap yielded a 76.008 MPH average...The class winner's best lap was 76.466 MPH...not bad!

I think the coverage for this race will be on the Speed channel this coming weekend for the New Jersey race.
8th place is very respectible. Do you know how many cars were in the race?
8th place is very respectible. Do you know how many cars were in the race?
I think it is around 30 in the Sport Tuner class. ...and for the record both cars - #10 and #12 have each taken a 5th place finish -- May and Jun races, I believe.

BTW the July 16/17 race will be on Speed channel 25 July - tomorrow/Sunday @1300 (1PM EST, 12PM CST, 11AM MST, etc...LoL)

The next Continental Tire Challenge race is in Quebec CA August 13/14.
If you're keeping up with the Koups racing in the Continental Tire Challenge...In the August race in Quebec the # 12 car finished in 11th position and the #10 car finished in 15th position.
Is it true that those cars are only pushing 220hp?
220-230whp, lets remember in race trim it's only 2200-2400 lbs.
Kia returning to Grand Am series in 2011:
Kia Returning to GRAND-AM for 2011

Right now the unofficial Street Tuner standings (by manufacturer) for 2010 has Kia in 5th place with 199 points.

The two Kia teams are 9th and 11th, with one 5th place finish each as a season best placement.

Not bad!
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