The Pirelli World Challenge will have a new entry in the Touring class for its next race weekend at Austin's Circuit of The Americas when Brianne Corn and Hale Motorsports re-introduce the Mazda MX-5 Miata to PWC competition.
The Texas native and current national rallycross champion is well known around Austin for her exploits on dirt, and is now looking to move into road racing.
“I have been looking for an opportunity to move into wheel to wheel, pavement racing and what better way to start than in a hometown race in Austin at the fantastic Circuit of the Americas?” said Corn.
A longtime San Marcos, Texas resident, Corn graduated from Texas State and currently works there, too.
“The support of the staff and faculty at Texas State has been invaluable. I owe so much of who I am and what I have accomplished in my life to Texas State,” she says. Her commitment to area motorsports includes track ownership, as Corn created and manages Brianne Corn Raceway in San Marcos, site of many Texas rallycross events.
Hale Motorsports made its professional racing debut in the World Challenge at Lime Rock in 2005. Since then it has competed in the Mazda MX-5 Cup and team principal Randy Hale is delighted to re-introduce the car to PWC competition.
“I am excited to bring the Mazda MX-5 back to Touring Car, and even more excited to work with Brianne,” remarked Hale from his shop in Connecticut. “Brianne has excelled at every challenge in Motorsports she has attempted, and I am sure she will be a driver to watch.”
The Mazdaspeed3 won the Touring driver's championship last year, but the Mazda MX-5 Miata has not competed in the class since 1999. Hale saw this as a great opportunity.
“We know the Mazda MX-5 very well, and once the car was added to the Touring class I knew this was the challenge we needed," he said. "It is a new car, and we won't have the most power out there, but the track favors good handling. With Brianne's driving I think we can surprise the established teams.”
Hale will be driving the No. 83 Hale Motorsports Mazda, and that number carries significance for the team.
“During the last months of his life, Paul Newman spent some time at Lime Rock driving one of my MX-5s,” said Hale. “The last race car he drove was No. 83, so we are running the number as a tribute to Paul. We are also proud to run ‘Hole in the Wall Camp' decals to remind people that you can support Newman's vision and legacy by giving to the camp to help children and their families who are facing serious illness. 2013 marks the 25 Anniversary of the Hole in the Wall Camp.”
The new venue also helps out Hale Motorsports as it takes on this new challenge. “Since this is the first race on for the class at Circuit of The Americas, the other teams do not have years of experience with track setup,” noted Hale. “All our competition will be starting at the same point we are.”