With less than a month until the Roar Before the Rolex 24, Silly Season is coming to an end in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
In the second and final update, Sportscar365 looks at the confirmed and likely entries for the Prototype Challenge class in 2016.
Confirmed Full-Season (7-8 cars):
CORE autosport – Jon Bennett and Colin Braun are set to defend their drivers and team titles in the No. 54 Oreca FLM09, in a near-identical program from 2015. Jeff Braun comes aboard as the team strategist for the full season, with Martin Plowman and Mark Wilkins completing the lineup for Daytona. Wilkins will be on board for the remaining Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup races as well. (1 car)
PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports – After preparing for a step up to the Prototype class, including taking delivery of a HPD ARX-04b, the Bobby Oergel-led team has made the late decision to instead return to PC with its tried-and-trusted Oreca FLM09. The driver lineup is in the process of being finalized for the 2015 Patron Endurance Cup champions, which swept class wins at Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans. (1 car)
Starworks Motorsport – The Florida-based team is set to return for a championship bid with two cars. Renger van der Zande has been re-signed for 2016 and will be joined by Alex Popow, Chris Cumming and Jack Hawksworth for Daytona. It’s believed Popow would be in the car for the full season, with the lineup in the second car to be announced in the next week. (2 cars)
Performance Tech – Following a breakout season in terms of performance, the Brent O’Neill-led squad will return with its PC entry with James French, who has been confirmed as the first full-season driver. The team anticipates confirming French’s season-long co-driver by the end of the week, with the third endurance pilot to be announced shortly. (1 car)
BAR1 Motorsports – The Brian Alder-led team has confirmed at least one full-season entry next year, with a second car at selected events, that could develop into a season-long deal. Driver lineups have yet to be announced. (1-2 cars)
JDC/Miller Motorsports – The John Church-led squad will return for third full-season campaign, with Mikhail Goikhberg confirmed in the team’s single entry for the entire championship and Chris Miller set for the NAEC races. Stephen Simpson is also expected to return but for selected races in order to focus on his new Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge program. (1 car)
RSR Racing – The Paul Gentilozzi-led team has put its two cars and full spares package up for sale, with the PC stalwarts having moved to GT Daytona next year under the F Performance Racing banner with a new factory supported Lexus program. Chris Cumming will shift his full-season focus to the FIA WEC with Tequila Patron ESM, while Bruno Junqueira recently tested the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO.