NEWS _ Mitchum Motorsports Signs Johnny Kanavas
Mitchum Motorsports Signs Johnny Kanavas
[official Mitchum Motorsports release]
Virginia Beach, VA (January 24, 2012): Mitchum Motorsports has signed Johnny Kanavas to drive the #63 ST class BMW at Daytona in the 2012 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge race. The addition of Kanavas completes the lineup for the team’s four car Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge program. Kanavas will be co-driving with Sarah Cattaneo.
“To be racing a BMW at Daytona is an amazing opportunity and I’m very pleased to be doing it with Mitchum Motorsports. Chris Mitchum has put together a strong assault on three GRAND-AM classes (GT, GS and ST), and I’m proud to be a part of it.” Kanavas adds, “I’m dedicating our effort to my late grandfather (a retired car designer from Detroit) who recently passed away.”
Mitchum has been growing the racing program over the past several years, after returning to GRAND-AM competition in 2010 with a single Camaro entry. The 2011 season saw the team double in size with a second GS class Camaro and in 2012 the team once again has doubled its efforts with the additional two ST class BMWs. The four, full season, Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge cars will be joined in Daytona by the team’s GT class Porsche for the 50th Anniversary of the Rolex 24.
Just two seasons removed from returning to racing in GRAND-AM with a single entry, Mitchum Motorsports now rolls into Daytona as one of the largest teams. The seasoned crew brings years of experience and is hungry to reach the podium this season. Team principal Chris Mitchum has handpicked the crew and has spent to the offseason preparing for Daytona. Prepping cars, training crew members and testing car and driver pairings is all a part of being ready for the opening of the season. “We are ready to go. All of the prep work we have done over the past couple of months will be the difference of hitting the ground running or brushing off cobwebs,” said team principal Chris Mitchum. “We’ll be at full speed when we unload in Daytona.”
The team’s other ST class BMW will be co-driven by Robert Stout and Kevin Gleason. This is the second consecutive season Stout has raced with Mitchum, having driven the #6 Camaro last year. Gleason, also in his sophomore year of GRAND-AM racing, has signed for the season as well. Both are accomplished sports car racers who bring years of experience to the team.
The 2012 season will be the third season of competition for the Mitchum Camaros. Through constant development the cars have proved to be competitive and reliable so the team has high expectations for the GS class cars. Co-driving the #62 car are Joey Atterbury, in his third season with Mitchum, and GRAND-AM veteran Gunter Schaldach. Atterbury has developed into a ‘closer’ for the team and will be invaluable in developing setups for both Camaros as he has as much seat time in the GS.R Camaro as anyone in the entire field. Schaldach is also familiar with Chevrolet Camaros, having competed in a GT class Camaro last season in the Rolex series.
The #6 Camaro will also be on track for the season. Sharing driving duties at Daytona will be Tim Bell and Aaron Steele. Tim has joined the team for the season after having competed in the ST class in 2011 and will be racing headed-to-head against his brother Matt who also races a Camaro in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. Aaron earned his seat by winning the Sunoco GRAND-AM 200 Challenge while competing in the Motorsports Vision Racing F3 Cup in the UK.
Destiny Deep Sea Water to Sponsor Mitchum BMW
Destiny Deep Sea Water has joined Mitchum Motorsports for the season, supporting the #63 BMW as well as the four additional cars Mitchum is fielding, including a second ST class BMW, two GS class Chevrolet Camaros and a GT class Porsche in the GRAND-AM Rolex series.
“We are really excited about adding Johnny to the team. He is a solid driver and a good fit for our team,” said Mitchum. “The addition of Destiny Waters as a sponsor is exciting as well. They have a great product and we are pleased they have chosen Mitchum Motorsports to represent them to the racing community.”
Mitchum Motorsports heads to Daytona this week for the opening race weekend of the 2012 GRAND-AM season. “We purchased some very good ST cars from Doran Enterprises and in a short amount of time we have been able to adapt them into our system. Drivers and crew are ready and the package should prove to be competitive. Over the next few months after Daytona we will really get into the development of these great race cars.”
The first round of the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge is at Daytona on January 27th. You can follow all of the Mitchum Motorsports cars via live timing and scoring at www.GRAND-AM.com. To stay up to speed all season long visit www.mitchum.ms or www.facebook.com/mitchummotorsports.
source _ Mitchum Motorsports