Kia Racing Carries Championship Lead To Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course For Rounds 11 And 12 Of Pirelli World Challenge

Mark Wilkins' Win in Toronto Keeps Kia atop Grand Touring Sport (GTS) Manufacturer Standings

- No. 38 B.R.A.K.E.S. Optima turbo driver Mark Wilkins leads GTS Driver Championship by 141 points

- Nic Jonsson, pilot of No. 36 Optima turbo, holds third place in title chase with three doubleheader events remaining in 16-race season

Jul 30, 2014, 15:32 ET from Kia Motors America

IRVINE, Calif., July 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Fresh from victory, the Kia Racing team heads to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, for rounds 11 and 12 of the Pirelli World Challenge (PWC).  Canadian-native and Kia Racing driver Mark Wilkins, piloting the No. 38 B.R.AK.E.S. Optima turbo, landed his second win of the 16-race season in his hometown of Toronto just two weeks ago and earned his fifth podium for 2014 during the doubleheader event.  With 11 podiums, including five victories, so far this season, Kia continues to lead the Manufacturer Championship, ahead of Ford, Porsche, Chevrolet, Nissan and Aston Martin.  Wilkins' impressive record has moved him to the top of the Driver Championship, while teammate Nic Jonsson, pilot of the No. 36 Optima, ranks third among all Grand Touring Sport (GTS) contenders.

"Our team's ultimate goal is winning the championship for Kia, and both Nic and I remain focused on the big picture over individual success," said Wilkins.  "Mid-Ohio is a track that suits our turbocharged Optima very well – it's fast and wide, and there are good opportunities to pass. Meanwhile, both Nic and I have had success there recently, so I feel confident that we should be very competitive among our GTS rivals."

Wilkins comes into the doubleheader weekend as the defending race champion, having won at the 13-turn, 2.258-mile permanent road course in 2013. For his part, Jonsson holds the Mid-Ohio track record for GTS-class cars, having posted a fast lap of 1:28.680 with an average speed of 91.664 mph last season.

Rounds 11 and 12 of the Pirelli World Challenge at Mid-Ohio take place Saturday, August 2, and Sunday, August 3. NBC Sports Network will air the televised coverage of the GTS rounds on Sunday, August 10, at 1:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage of the competition is available online at, and race fans can keep up-to-date with the team via the Kia Racing Facebook page at and by following along on Twitter: @KiaRacing.

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America (KMA) is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea.  KMA proudly serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA and surpassed the 500,000 annual sales mark for the second consecutive year in 2013 following the launch of seven all-new or significantly redesigned vehicles.   KMA offers a complete line of vehicles, including the rear-drive K900 flagship sedan[1], Cadenza premium sedan, Sorento CUV, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Sportage compact CUV, Optima midsize sedan, Optima Hybrid, the Forte compact sedan, Forte5 and Forte Koup, Rio and Rio 5-door sub-compacts and the Sedona midsize multi-purpose vehicle, through a network of more than 765 dealers across the United States.  Kia's U.S. manufacturing plant in West Point, Georgia, builds the Optima* and Sorento* and is responsible for the creation of more than 14,000 plant and supplier jobs.

Information about KMA and its full vehicle line-up is available at For media information, including photography, visit  To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at

*The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX, SX & Limited and certain LX Trims only) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

[1] 2015 K900 V8 available in select trims and in select markets with limited availability.

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SOURCE Kia Motors America