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GT World Challenge America

Callaway Scales Back to One Car; Cooper Released from Contract

Michael Cooper released from contract at Callaway as team scales back to one car…

Photo: Richard Prince/Cadillac

Callaway Competition USA will field only a single Corvette C7 GT3-R in next weekend’s Pirelli World Challenge season-opener at St. Pete, with Michael Cooper having been released from his contract and on the hunt for a full-time drive.

The defending SprintX champion was announced alongside Daniel Keilwitz as full-season drivers for the new program last year, although a delay in the build of the team’s second Corvette has forced them to start the season with only one entry for the German driver.

An update on the status of the second car will be made in the coming weeks, according to a team statement.

It’s resulted in Cooper searching for a GT drive in the moments building up to the March 9-11 race.

“Because of the delay of the second car, Callaway didn’t have anywhere to fit me as they promised,” Cooper told Sportscar365.

“I’m free to drive anything in GT or any class outside of GTS because I still have that commitment to Blackdog [Speed Shop] for the SprintX races.

“My goal would be to land something for the full season but obviously being just over one week out from St. Pete, it’s going to be a pretty tall order.”

Cooper said he’s “not sure” what Callaway’s plans are for the SprintX rounds, which requires two-driver lineups.

It’s understood the team had not yet confirmed its SprintX drivers prior to the latest development of a scaled back entry, with the season starting in just three weeks’ time at Circuit of The Americas.

The former Cadillac factory driver has indicated that he has no contract limitations that would prevent him from driving any specific cars, other than his existing GTS SprintX commitment to Blackdog, alongside full-season driver Tony Gaples in a Camaro GT4.R.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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