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IMSA Expands Green Racing Initiatives

IMSA expands Green Racing initiatives amid ramped up electrification plans…

Photo: John Dagys

IMSA has announced an expanded set of initiatives for its IMSA Green program, which extends its affiliation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and SAE International.

According to the sanctioning body, the program will “aggressively pursue” green racing protocols in an effort to “significantly reduce” the championship’s carbon emissions and overall environmental footprint.

The collaboration includes Michelin and VP Racing Fuels.

“By taking a fresh look at the Green Racing protocols, and IMSA Green, we are taking steps to ensure sports car racing continues to thrive in a rapidly changing mobility landscape which is focused on a reduced carbon emission future,” IMSA President Scott Atherton said.

“In doing so, IMSA can showcase that racing can be used to develop and validate innovations while remaining exciting and sustainable for decades to come and be attractive to automotive partners, participants, sponsors and most importantly fans.”

IMSA maintained Green Challenge championship status from 2008-16 until the GT Le Mans class shifted to E20 fuel in 2017.

It was previously known as the Dekra Green Award.

According to IMSA, it believes the introduction of the so-called DPi 2.0 platform, which will feature a ‘mild hybrid’ powertrain, will be central to becoming the first racing series to attain Green Racing Cup status. 

This status is defined within the SAE J2880, the Green Racing protocols, which was first published in 2008 and revised in 2014.

“We are pleased to be working with IMSA to expand the series’ work on sustainability,” said Chris Grundler, Director of EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality.

“With this agreement, IMSA is committing to a wide variety of actions that will lead to reduced air pollution, less fuel use, and will move the racing community towards more sustainable practices.” 

Mark Chung, SAE International’s Chief Marketing Officer, added: “We look forward to working with IMSA in increasing utilization of Green Racing Protocols and how that will translate to their many partners to advance the technology of the broader mobility industry.”

Future programs being evaluated include going beyond race cars and provide with information on “relevant, advanced technologies that produce clean and efficient production vehicles” they might drive in the future.

Additionally, IMSA is exploring the adoption of ETCR combined with an ePrototype platform, along with the implementation of solar energy within the pits and paddock, along with the deployment of hybrid and electric=powered cars for hot laps and pace car use.

“Green Racing is a great platform to educate our stakeholders and fans about what IMSA’s environmental mission is all about and how it is directly tied to the priorities of nearly all of our nineteen automotive partners,” Atherton added.

“There are simple, reasonable practices we can implement immediately to get this program making a difference along with more aggressive initiatives to be implemented in the future.”

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 FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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