Faced with with the increased operating costs that’s come since the merger and now with a dwindling amount of gentleman driver interest in the series, 8Star Motorsports could be forced to sit on the sidelines of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship next year.
The Enzo Potolicchio-owned squad, which enjoyed a breakout 2014 season in Prototype Challenge with two class victories, a pair of poles and a strong runner-up finish in the championship, has yet to secure the necessary funding for a return assault in 2015.
“We haven’t been able to finalize with drivers or customers for the season,” Potolicchio told Sportscar365. “We’re still optimistic but we’re not giving our program away. We run a top operation and feel that we’re one of the top options in the class.”
Potolicchio, who had also been exploring a return to the Prototype class with DP and P2 options, is still pushing to finalize a full-season PC program, although time is running out, with the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona now only one month away.
The Florida-based team has yet to submit a full-season entry, with prospects of a Daytona-only effort also a challenge due to the high entry costs for a one-off race.
8Star is not the only team currently facing a similar situation in the spec prototype class, with only five of the ten cars that competed in this year’s championship confirmed for the full season next year.
“I’m a little frustrated but I’m OK with it,” Potolicchio said. “We run a top operation and we’re competitive in pricing but we can’t give it away. There’s a budget and bills to pay and I’m not going to do that.
“It looks like we may be heavily concentrated on our Indy Lights program instead.”
The team recently completed a successful rollout with its new Dallara IL-15 with 19-year-old IMSA Porsche GT3 Canada Champion Scott Hargrove handling testing duties.
Potolicchio said they expect to confirm their first Indy Lights entry shortly, with a second car already on order.
The championship-winning owner/driver, meanwhile, said he’s finalizing plans to compete in the Blancpain Endurance Series next year as a driver and is currently in discussions with two teams.