The excitement is building! If you are not familiar with Volkswagen Motorsports, the last time we had a series was back in 2000 with the New Beetle Cup. Across the pond, Volkswagen runs the Volkswagen Polo Cup and the Volkswagen Racing Cup. This is huge for the U.S and Volkswagen enthusiast.
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Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup 2008
The new Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup will celebrate its racing début at the VIRginia International Raceway this coming weekend (25-27 April).
The Jetta TDI Cup for rookies is the first one-make racing series in the United States to feature ultra-modern diesel technology. The 170-hp two-litre TDI engine powering the Jetta lives up to its promise of being a “clean diesel”: fitted with a catalytic converter and particulate filter, the racing powerplant meets the stringent U.S. environmental regulations as well as the strict Euro 5 standard.
The Cup Jetta was developed by Volkswagen Motorsport in Germany. The first production-derived touring car, equipped with numerous components from the Volkswagen Group’s automotive offering, reeled off an extensive testing programme. After the final specification for small-volume production was defined, the Cup vehicles were prepared at Volkswagen’s plant in Mexico.
The racing series’ unique concept – The Cup Jetta vehicles are identical down to every nut and bolt, are centrally fielded and even swapped among the drivers – originated in Germany as well: for over a decade, the ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup and its predecessor, the Lupo Cup, have been successfully promoting young talent. “The idea of the ‘touring car school’ remains unrivalled to this day and enables optimum development of young talent at reasonable costs. The central fielding and swapping of the cars guarantees a maximum of equality in opportunities as well as top-class sport. Talent determines success, not the size of someone’s wallet,” says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen. “We’re proud that by running the Jetta TDI Cup in the USA this idea has found another interesting stage.”
30 participants aged 16 to 26 from the USA, Canada and Mexico will be contesting seven races. Prior to that, they completed an intensive evaluation programme. The selection process considered various factors to identify the best from the 700 candidates seeking to secure a Jetta cockpit: driving and communication skills were included in the evaluation as well as physical fitness. The “entry ticket” for the Cup costs 35,000 U.S. dollars, the Cup champion can look forward to 250,000 dollars supporting the next step in his racing career.
After the inaugural race at VIRginia Int. Raceway the youngsters will compete at the legendary Canadian Mosport circuit (17/18 May). After a round at Portland (25-27 July) the Cup will move on to Lime Rock (14-17 August). In September races are scheduled at the Iowa Speedway (19/20 September) and the Thunderbolt Raceway in New Jersey (27/28 September). The season’s finale will be held alongside the American Le Mans Series round at Road Atlanta (01-04 October).
- Volkswagen Motorsport