FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AUSTIN, August 31, 2021 – Spec MX-5 Challenge, in technical partnership with Mazda Motorsports, proudly announces the ongoing relationship with presenting and tire partner, Toyo Tires, through the 2022 racing season. This comes following two on-track tests with five tire manufacturers, technical partners, Mazda Motorsports, Mazda Motorsports’ factory drivers, and Spec MX-5 Challenge racers in participation.
“The Toyo has the most consistency along multiple heat cycles,” says Joshua Smith, technical development lead for Mazda Motorsports. “You can easily get four raceable heat cycles and it continues to provide a competitive and affordable race tire through at least eight cycles for most drivers,” Smith continues.
To evaluate six different tires from five manufacturers, the first test was held at Willow Springs International Raceway across two days with drivers Andrew Carbonell, Justin Piscitell, Jared Thomas, Alex Berg, Bryson Morris, and Clayton Ketcher. Three tires were selected to move to a second test, held at Roebling Road Raceway. At the conclusion, Spec MX-5 Challenge, Mazda Motorsports and the racers agreed Toyo Tires provided the best value for the series.
“In addition to the consistency between the first and the fourth cycles, allowing it to be a tire a racer need only purchase one set of for a given a race weekend, the Toyo had a very broad window for slip angle that makes it very easy to catch and correct when in a slide,” reflects Smith. “This makes it a great option for side-by-side racing without car contact.”
This partnership with Toyo, which began in 2020, will continue through 2022 allowing for up to 50 sets of tires to be complimentary provided through January 2022, one for each new Spec MX-5 build, as well as adding to the most contingency awards offered in any club racing program, requiring nine racers for Toyo cash payout in the Challenge series, as well as Toyo bucks in NASA’s ST5 class and SCCA’s STL classes.
Spec MX-5 Challenge: Positioned between Spec Miata and Global MX-5 Cup, Spec MX-5 Challenge is the Driver Development Series for amateur racing. Spec MX-5 Challenge offers a variety of competitions to appeal to diverse needs and to support driver development from karters to novices to masters to pros. Spec MX-5 Challenge also offers a National Championship with over $70,000 in prize money.
Toyo Tires: Toyo Tires products have been embraced by racers, enthusiasts and everyday drivers. You will find the full-line of tires, for everything from light trucks to sports cars and even heavy duty trucks, at thousands of dealers across the United States. Fans and consumers can easily locate dealers when visiting toyotires.com, and they can learn more about the full line of products to see how they fit their personal lifestyle.
Mazda Motorsports: Mazda Motorsports is responsible for all auto racing initiatives within the North American market. From promoting and servicing grassroots racers, to developing the open-wheel and sports car drivers of the future, to competing in the top-tier of North American endurance sports car racing, Mazda Motorsports oversees one of the largest and most diverse racing programs anywhere. Our mission is to ensure that anyone who wishes to race a Mazda at any level has the support they need to be competitive. Through our Mazda Team Membership Program, Mazda racers have access to parts at discount, and can earn a variety of contingencies as well as benefit from at-track support at many events around the country.