2019 Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Season to Feature More Powerful Cars, $375K in Scholarships

Rising stars will show their worth on the national stage with hopes of moving onwards and upwards in the professional ranks.

Mazda Motorsport

Mazda is holding true to its investment in grassroots racing with the 2019 Global Mazda MX-5 Cup season set to kick off at Circuit Of The Americas in March. There, a list of up-and-coming racers will pack the grid in spec equipment and fight for victory through to the end of the calendar which will conclude at Laguna Seca alongside the IndyCar finale.

Drivers will be competing behind the wheel of identical Mazda MX-5 Cup cars, this year equipped with new, more powerful 2.0-liter engines. Output is up to 181 horsepower at 7,500 rpm, a marginal increase over the former 155-horsepower version that's been used in seasons past.

In the top ND-2 class, the field will fight for the podium in hopes of claiming $200,000 in scholarship money at the end of the season. Furthermore, the ND-2 Rookie of the Year will be awarded a $75,000 prize. Both of these rewards can be applied to the next step in each respective driver's careers, which can include continuing Mazda's Road to 24 ladder system.

The entry-level ND-1 category also boasts an impressive lineup of new drivers, and in this case, they'll be driving for a grand prize of $100,000.

After visiting COTA in March for the season-opening doubleheader, the Global Mazda MX-5 Cup series will race at Barber Motorsports Park in April; Road America in June; Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in July; Portland International Raceway in late August and early September; and finally, closing the season out at Laguna Seca on Sept. 21.

Last season, the championship was decided in the final race with Nikko Reger narrowly winning the title and the $200,000. This put an exhilarating end to the year which included 2,467 passes for position in just twelve races with wins from six different drivers.