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GS Entry Swells to 31 Cars for Daytona

GS class entry swells to 31 cars for Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge season opener…

Photo: Jake Galstad/IMSA

Next weekend’s Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge season opener at Daytona is set to see a near-record grid in the GS class, with 31 GT4-spec cars entered for the BMW Endurance Challenge.

The four-hour round will also feature the debut of the new-for-2018 TCR class, as well as the final expected outing for ST class machinery on the Daytona high banks.


Following a 28-car entry at the Roar Before the 24, an additional four cars have been added to the GS class since the pre-season test.

Winward Racing/HTP Motorport has confirmed a third Mercedes-AMG GT4 entry, with Murillo Racing doubling its GS class effort with the German manufacturer and new entries for Stephen Cameron Racing and the Eric Bachelart-led Quest/Ramsey Racing squad.

It brings the total of Mercedes GT4s to a class-high ten entries.

GMG Racing has also added a third Audi R8 LMS GT4 to the mix, with Ashley Freiberg so far the only listed driver, while Classic BMW has opted to enter only a single BMW M4 GT4 for the race after having two cars at the Roar.

Mercedes, Audi and BMW will all make its GT4 debuts in top-level North American competition next weekend.

In all, seven GT4 manufacturers will be represented on the grid in Daytona, with seven Ford Mustang GT4s entered alongside four Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport MRs, two McLaren 570S GT4s and a pair of Aston Martin Vantage GT4s.

The TCR class sees a seven-car entry, following the addition of a third Audi RS 3 LMS for Compass Racing but the withdrawal of JDC-Miller Motorsports’ Audi following Michael Johnson’s heavy accident at the test that left Johnson with a broken leg.

Only five cars, meanwhile, are listed in ST, three being MINI JCW entries, alongside a Porsche Cayman from Bodymotion Racing and BimmerWorld’s BMW 328i.

The most notable absence is Freedom Autosport and Mazda, which are not currently entered for the season-opener.

Aston, Mercedes, BMW Get BoP Adjustments

A handful of GT4 cars have been handed Balance of Performance adjustments since the Roar.

It includes 15kg minimum weight increases for both the Aston Martin and BMW, while the Mercedes is now required to run in ECU “Map 1” as an IMSA revision.

Additionally, fuel capacity adjustments have been made to the Audi (+5 liters), BMW (+7 liters) and Mercedes (+6 liters) GT4 cars and associated refueling restrictor changes.

All three IMSA-approved TCR models have also been given fuel increases of 6 liters each.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John



  1. Mike K

    January 19, 2018 at 3:18 pm

    In a side note, ST shrinks to the smallest field ever.

  2. Andy Flinn

    January 19, 2018 at 5:03 pm

    Thirty-one cars, seven Mustangs and not a single GT4 Camaro.

    • Trevor

      January 19, 2018 at 11:13 pm

      Years of only supporting Pratt & Miller may finally have bitten Chevy in the backside.

      • Matt

        January 20, 2018 at 1:10 am

        P&M got way too greedy with the cost of the Camaro. I’m sure lots of people want to run it but can’t afford it. On another note, I was hoping to see a Panoz or too on the grid this year. They seem like great cars from their run in PWC last year.

  3. rando

    January 20, 2018 at 11:07 pm

    Wow. Only 5 in ST? 🙁

    • MattZ

      January 21, 2018 at 8:50 am

      I would have to assume because the class is going away after this year.

      • Slicks in the wet

        January 21, 2018 at 2:04 pm

        Easy top 5 opportunities to pad resumes though

  4. Zone

    January 21, 2018 at 4:27 pm

    5 in st ….great that Is such a boring class . Last couple of years that class would overshadow the GS class. It’s almost a flip flop from last year. Glad to see GS back up to its old self. Was hoping the carmaro was here.

  5. Josh

    January 22, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    What happened to the Alfa that was supposedly going to be running in TCR?

    • Trevor

      January 25, 2018 at 11:52 am

      The Guilietta had not been homologated for the US yet; only Europe.

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