GTWC America pro-Am champion Ashton Harrison returns to SRO for Pro class campaign
While contesting her first IMSA season, GT World Challenge America Pro-Am reigning champion Ashton Harrison will be back in SRO partnering Mario Farnbacher and Racers Edge Motorsports, this time tackling the Pro class.
Less than a month ago, IMSA rookie Ashton Harrison almost bagged a podium at her first participation in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona - in yet again another proof of her exceptional rise in the world of sports car racing. Harrison, who made history in the Lamborghini Super Trofeo by becoming the first woman to win the Lamborghini world finals in 2019, has in fact been unstoppable ever since. In 2021, she took victory at debut in GT3, claiming an outstanding win at the 8H of Indianapolis, final round of the GT World Challenge America, run in conjunction with the Intercontinental GT Challenge. She would join Racers Edge Motorsports in 2022 for a full campaign in the ProAm class, partnering HPD factory driver Mario Farnbacher. The duo secured 4 victories, seven podiums en route to win the ProAm title, in Harrison's rookie season. While she announced a move to IMSA for a full Michelin Endurance Cup campaign in 2023, Harrison and Farnbacher will reunite for a second year in the Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS, again at the wheel of the Racers Edge Motorsports with WTRAndretti Acura NSX GT3 Evo22. Sporting the traditional Harrison Contracting Company red livery, the #93 Acura of Harrison and Farnbacher will this time tackle the Pro class. “I’m super excited to get started with Racers Edge in SRO for 2023" - said Harrison. "It’s a big step for me to take on the challenge of racing in the Pro class this season. I’m thrilled to have Harrison Contracting back on board with us another year. I hope we can bring them success again on the podium." At their first 2022 weekend in GT World Challenge, Harrison and Farnbacher claimed a ProAm podium in Sonoma, followed by another second place and a win at NOLA. With a spectacular second part of the season, they clinched another second place at Watkins Glen, before a three-win streak at Road America and Sebring. A second place in class at Indy ultimately sealed the class title, as Harrison became the first woman to be crowned champion in GT3 in SRO. The achievements also gained her the Rookie of the Year award. "My strategy is to continue to learn and get better every weekend and I think I’m in a good position with the team and teammate I have on board", Harrison continued. "I’m grateful to have WTRAndretti along for the ride as well, and to represent Honda/HPD Racing and Acura Motorsports in the Acura NSX GT3 Evo." "I’m prepared to fight with Mario on podium again through our champagne madness- even knowing he will probably always win. I can’t wait to get started at Sonoma.” Having known each other since Harrison graduated from the HPD programme, the Racers Edge Motorsports driver duo have become good friends over the course of the last couple of years. “I’m really looking forward to running with Ashton again, and I have some podium celebrations already planned", said Farnbacher, one of the most experienced drivers with the Acura platform and a two-time IMSA GTD champion. "We became very good friends over the last year and spent a lot of time together off track, too. Those times really helped develop our relationship and it’s always nice to share a car with a friend."
Ashton made a big step forward from last year to this year, and even through the season, she was constantly growing and getting better. We have already seen she has done a great job this year with her pace. We’ve been to all of these tracks before now, too, so we’re familiar with them and don’t have that learning curve. I’m pretty confident we will have a good season- we know the team and the car, and each other as teammates.” Harrison is so far the second female driver confirmed in the 2023 GT World Challenge America's season: Samantha Tan will partner BMW factory driver John Edwards at the wheel of the #38 ST Racing BMW M4 GT3, also in a Pro class entry. The upcoming season is set to start on March 31-April 2, at Sonoma Raceway, for the first of the seven scheduled events. Each race meeting consists of two 90-minute double-headers.