The most important motorcycle race on the west coast, the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix, features the MotoGP World Championship. The Formula 1 of two-wheel racing, the MotoGP series stars the planet’s greatest motorcycle riders vying for the title of World Champion. The 2011 season begins with a slew of rider/motorcycle changes, with multi-time champion Valentino Rossi switching to Ducati, Casey Stoner moving to Honda, and American hot-shot Ben Spies to the Factory Yamaha team. However, all will have to get past the defending event and world champion Jorge Lorenzo, and Red Bull ace Dani Pedrosa. A full weekend of racing activity includes the AMA categories Pro Motorcycle SuperSport, Pro Daytona SportBike, and Pro National Guard SuperBike.
The first major sports car race of the year at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca sees the stars of the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series visit the Monterey track. The Continental Tire Sports Car Series, powered by MAZDA6, will feature competition in the Daytona Prototype class, and the Grand Touring (GT) category. Grand-Am racing events typically feature some of the most exciting competition in all of racing, with drivers bumping and barging their way past each other in the race to the checkered flag. The race weekend will include autograph and meet-and-greet sessions with the drivers, including TV and movie heartthrob Patrick Dempsey, who competes in the GT class.