Karl Wittmer leads the Pirelli GT4 America SprintX East Pro-Am standings with two rounds of the championship to go and a new team behind him.
This week in the Pirelli Paddock Pass, Wittmer looks back on the season so far, his last-minute introduction to Ian Lacy Racing at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, and more.
What has been the highlight of your season so far?
“I’ve had a couple of personal highlights this season and the one that I reflect on the most was the VIR weekend. Marko Radisic and I had a decent start in COTA, but we knew as a team we could have had better execution.
“We went into VIR weekend as underdogs: a team that no one predicted to win due to the size of the program and previous results.
“We ended up coming out of VIR with two class podiums, including a class win and a second-place finish overall.”
How much do you take the championship battle into consideration in the remaining races versus concentrating on winning the races?
“The championship is everything to me, whether it’s a manufacturer, a team, or a driver’s championship.
“I always focus on the big picture and try not to take unnecessary risks which could potentially impact the weekend, as well as the season results.
“The main objective is to deliver quality points for the team and the manufacturer.”
What comes to mind when you think back on the CTMP weekend when Ian Lacy Racing found a seat for you and kept you in the championship?
“Emotional, that’s what comes to mind. It wasn’t the easiest start to a race weekend do to unforeseen circumstances with the team (Precision Driving) not being able to make the race.
“I had to focus on the task at hand which was to find a ride and maximize championship points.
“I’m very fortunate for the opportunity that Ian Lacy gave me that weekend. I’m not sure how the season would have played out if Ian’s team didn’t step in to help.
“Now I will be finishing the season with Ian Lacy in the Ford. Marko and I are still very good friends and parted ways for the remainder of the seasons in good spirits.”
Which of the upcoming circuits do you expect to to be your strongest and why?
“I’m definitely looking forward to Watkins Glen. I love the old-school layout and the banked corners that create tons of rolling speed.
“It’s an unforgiving, high-speed track that requires constant focus and consistency to pull off solid results. Last year I was able to clinch the TC pole position and track record, which I hope to hold onto for a while!”
Coming from a racing family, was there any doubt you would be involved in the sport? What else did you consider doing?
“Being Canadian, I really wanted to become a hockey player in the NHL. I played quite a bit growing up and I took both sports seriously. I even ended up playing three seasons in Europe, but decided to turn my focus onto racing.
“There was absolutely no doubt that I was going to be involved in motorsports. My father bred the four brothers into racing at a very young age, and we’re very thankful for that.
“It’s still a mystery which brother is the fastest, but one day we will find out!”