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IMSA Plotting Le Mans-Style Scrutineering for Rolex 24

Public scrutineering event among plans for Rolex 24 ‘Speedweek’ according to IMSA President John Doonan…

Photo: John Dagys

IMSA is looking to add a number of fan-related activities to the buildup of next year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona, including having scrutineering be open to the public.

Series president John Doonan confirmed that a Le Mans-style scrutineering event, held at the One Daytona complex across the street from the track, is in the works for 2021.

It would be made possible thanks to the moving of the annual Roar Before the Rolex 24 pre-season test to the weekend prior to the race, allowing IMSA to craft a Speedweeks-style of events for fans, corporate partners and media.

“As other sanctioning bodies, like our brothers and sisters at NASCAR have learned, there is an opportunity to do what we do potentially with some more efficiencies for everybody,” Doonan told Sportscar365.

“There’s no question that the Roar and the race being back-to-back produces that. It’s one less trip to the State of Florida for that event.

“But over and above that, it was something I was thinking about before we knew about COVID simply because I think it produces a really unique opportunity for media, promotions and doing some more things to create sort of a ‘Rolex 24 Speedweek’ or whatever you want to call it.”

Doonan said plans are still being formulated but with the goal of providing fans with more “educational” experiences of IMSA racing.

“That’s the whole idea,” he said. “I think giving our audience the opportunity to be able to take in our content in a unique way would be pretty special.

“It allows us to do some more things over at One Daytona, which is a terrific property now with the restaurants and the hotels and maybe do our scrutineering over there.

“It produces an opportunity for fans to come and spend a week with us in Daytona and engage everybody with the drivers, the cars and teams.”

While an annual tradition at Le Mans in the Place de Republique city center, Doonan said it’s not their idea to have a direct copy of the Le Mans scrutineering experience.

“Certainly they’ve done an amazing job with that traditionally over the years,” he said.

“I think we want to do something that gives our audience a chance to see the cars, understand what we do, from young and old. I think it’s going to bring the product right in front of everybody in more of an educational way.”

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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