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WeatherTech Championship

IMSA Establishes Minimum Refueling Times

IMSA establishes minimum refueling times in wake of controversial Daytona BoP penalty…

Photo: Mike Levitt/IMSA

IMSA has established minimum refueling times for all three classes of the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, in the wake of the controversial Balance of Performance penalty issued to the Montaplast by Land Motorsport Audi R8 LMS in January’s Rolex 24 at Daytona.

The sanctioning body released Thursday a bulletin to teams confirming minimum times for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, listed at 30 seconds for Prototype, 34 seconds for GT Le Mans and 40 seconds for GT Daytona cars, for full tank fill.

This minimum is understood to override any refueling restrictor sizes issued, and will also be listed in the class-specific BoP tables that are expected to be released by the end of the week.

Land’s Audi, which had nearly a two-lap lead at the time in the Rolex 24, was hit with a five-minute stop-and-hold penalty for having a “consistent and beneficial” advantage in refueling during the race.

The penalty relegated the Christopher Mies, Jeffrey Schmidt and Kelvin and Sheldon van der Linde-driven entry to an eventual seventh place class finish, in the first in-race BoP penalty of its kind.

The German team later explained that it made “changes to the contents” of the car’s fuel cell for increased fuel flow, which was permitted within the rules.

It’s unclear if IMSA will police minimum times for short-fill stops as well, although it appears unlikely given the bulletin’s wording.

In addition to the new minimum refueling time, IMSA has added the possibility of completing “fuel delivery” and “fuel consumption” audits to the WeatherTech Championship Sporting Regulations.

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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