The kickoff to a new season of IMSA competition means a chance to bring everyone from various disciplines, series, countries and marques together at Daytona International Speedway.
IMSA boasts an incredible 13 different marques racing in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s Rolex 24 at Daytona, a number more than the marque involvement in the Formula 1 World Championship (four), NASCAR Cup Series (three) and IndyCar Series (two) combined.
That list of 13 includes:
- Acura, Cadillac, Mazda and Nissan, the four Daytona Prototype international (DPi) marques within the Prototype category
- BMW, Chevrolet, Ferrari, Ford and Porsche, within GT Le Mans
- Audi, Lamborghini, Lexus and Mercedes-AMG in GT Daytona – along with Acura, BMW, Ferrari and Porsche, which are in more than one class
That number grows to 17 when you add in additional marques Aston Martin, McLaren, MINI and VW in the supporting Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge division.
This does not factor in the four LMP2 chassis constructors, Oreca, Ligier, Dallara and Riley Multimatic, who produce the baseline chassis for the DPi marques to work off for their bodywork creations.
The emerging ABB FIA Formula E Championship has seven marques this season, with more to come in further seasons.
One of the goals for the marques at an IMSA event is to activate on site. Many of the marques have a display present in the DIS infield, with a new stretch of asphalt paved for each of these displays to be erected. These displays were on grass last year (see left).
This means that in addition to the action on track, the marques are competing for the hearts and dollars of fans, and offering fans an opportunity to get closer via this vehicle.
“The interest we’ve received from teams all over the world wishing to compete in the 2018 WeatherTech Championship has been remarkable,” said IMSA President Scott Atherton. “This level of interest shows us that our platform is clearly desirable and working.”