The Racer’s Group is set to make a full-season return to racing, with a multi-car program in the works for SRO’s GT4 America championship according to team principal Kevin Buckler.
The California-based team, which has made selected Pirelli World Challenge starts in both GT and GTS competition this year, will focus efforts around Porsche’s new-for-2019 Cayman GT4 Clubsport.
Buckler said they’ve placed orders for two of the yet-to-be-launched Porsches, with one set to run in GT4 America SprintX and another planned for the new GT4 America West regional series.
Driver lineups have yet to be confirmed although Buckler indicated that both Derek DeBoer and Sean Gibbons, the team’s two 2018 SprintX drivers, will likely be part of the mix.
The pairing took part in three of the five SprintX weekends this year, as well as last weekend’s California 8 Hours at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in a first-generation GT4 Clubsport MR, where they scored a GT4 class podium finish alongside Spencer Pumpelly.
“We’re planning to do two cars in PWC,” Buckler told Sportscar365. “That’s all done. We’re working on a third car and it could end up over there or [in IMSA] depending on budget.”
The longtime Porsche entrant is among the first that will take delivery of the new-generation car in early January, with TRG planning to field at least one entry in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge season-opener at Daytona later that month.
Buckler indicated the team will focus its 2019 efforts around the German manufacturer’s new GT4 offering, which has already completed extensive testing and development in both Europe and North America.
“I’ve been racing Porsches for so long. I guarantee they’re going to come with a good piece,” he said. “And the good racing is in GT4.
“I can [continue to] do what I’m doing with the winery, which is a big deal. It’s like running three GTD teams. I can still do this and keep the world going.”
While having scaled back its full-time pro racing involvement in recent years, Buckler’s wine business has flourished, with the Rolex 24 at Daytona and 24 Hours of Le Mans class winner set to break ground on a 16,000 square-foot winery in Petaluma, Calif. in February.
Buckler said the facility, located in the downtown waterfront district, will include a motorsports museum featuring TRG’s cars.