The 2017 edition of the Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Yokohama might be the best one yet


What better way to celebrate the 150th birthday of this great country than leaving some serious skid marks on its best racetracks? Especially, that is, when we’re talking about leaving those marks in Porsches?

On second thought? Better to leave that sacred patriotic duty to the profession­als (or at least the semi-profession­als).

Since its inception in 2011, the Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Yokohama has been one of the world’s premier onemake racing series. But this year, they’ve kicked it up several notches — in size, in speed, and in pure racing glory. For one thing, the race locations have been ex- panded to include some of Canada’s most prestigiou­s motorsport venues. The 12-round racing series kicks off May 19-21 at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanvill­e, Ontario — the official beginning of what will prove to be a truly epic summer of Porsche racing. In 2017, the event goes next to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal for the second year in a row, as well as a rare cross-border stop at Watkins Glen Internatio­nal in Watkins Glen, New York. It continues later in the summer on the track of the Honda Indy, Toronto, then on to the Grand Prix of Trois-rivieres, Quebec, before finishing back in Bowmanvill­e the first weekend of September.

But the real highlight of this year’s race is the introducti­on of new cars to the Platinum Cup class. Those lucky racers will be driving brand-new 2017 911 GT3 Cup cars, which boast direct-injected 4.0-liter flat-six-cylinder engines, which put out a whopping 485 horesepowe­r — which is astonishin­g for any car, let alone a superlight (the GT3 Cup clocks in at about 1200 kg) racecar.

Now that’s what we call glorious and free.

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