As one of the leading drivers in the highly competitive ADAC GT Masters series, Daniel Keilwitz is set for a transition to North American racing this year, as part of the newly announced Callaway Competition USA program in Pirelli World Challenge.
The 28-year-old German, a former FIA GT3 European champion, has been a key part of Callaway’s success in Europe, winning the 2013 GT Masters title and finishing runner-up in the championship last year despite missing three events due to an injury.
Keilwitz is the subject of this week’s Pirelli Paddock Pass, a new weekly feature profiling drivers and faces within the PWC paddock.
What are your thoughts on coming to the U.S. to race in Pirelli World Challenge next season?
“I’m really excited because I heard a lot of good things about racing in U.S. and PWC. I already watched a lot of the races from last year.
“It’s a really cool series and it will be also new for me to race a GT3 car alone in some races so you can set up the car exactly like you want.”
How much did you know about this championship while you were racing in GT Masters?
“I always watched the races from the PWC a little bit also because I know some drivers who raced in the series. And at the middle of last year, when we began to plan to start in the series, I read a lot about the series and start watching it.
“For sure it is always a bit different if you come to a new series. You have to take care to not make any mistakes what was maybe allowed in GT Masters.”
How do you think your experience racing in European GT championships will help in your transition to racing in the U.S.?
“Racing in Europe is really competitive and I learned a lot racing the last few years in different series with different cars and teams, so I will do my best to bring all the experience into the team.
“I think it’s important for the whole Callaway team to work good together as a team. We have an experienced and championship-winning driver from the U.S. with Michael Cooper, we have a really good car, and I will bring all my experience that I have with the car from the past two years racing it.”
What do you expect U.S. fans to think about the Callaway Corvette C7 GT3-R? Many of them will be seeing it in person for the first time this year.
“I’m sure they will like it! It looks and sounds really good so I can only give the advice to visit the track and see it racing!
Are there any U.S. tracks on the PWC calendar that you are most looking forward to visiting?
“Honestly I’m looking forward to every track because of the new experience. I asked a lot drivers and everybody is telling me a different track as his favorite so it seems like they all have to be fun.”