The LMP3 class will be eliminated from the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at the end of the season, the sanctioning body has confirmed, leaving the entry-level prototypes to race exclusively in the VP Racing SportsCar Challenge beginning in 2024.
Announced on Wednesday, the news follows confirmation that LMP2 machinery will remain in the WeatherTech Championship through at least the end of the 2025 season.
At that time, IMSA communicated that a decision on the future of LMP3 would be made before June 1.
Having been introduced into the series in 2021 as a measure to help boost grid sizes, the Nissan-powered prototypes were initially given a two-year commitment, which was followed up by a one-year extension for the 2023 season.
The news does not come as a surprise to the paddock, following multiple discussions and dialogue in recent months.
Sportscar365 understands that IMSA had communicated to stakeholders last year that it would revert to a four-class format in 2024, with one of the Pro-Am-enforced prototype classes going away.
In a memo to competitors, IMSA President John Doonan said they had engaged in “considerable dialogue” with “internal and external” stakeholders to determine LMP3’s future within IMSA.
Additionally, he explained that the reason to take out LMP3s from the WeatherTech Championship is due to “anticipated growth” in the series’ other classes.
Relaunched this year from the now-defunct IMSA Prototype Challenge series, VP Racing Challenge comprises of LMP3 and GT4 cars with Bronze or Silver-driver mandates, and has seen considerable growth since its debut at the Roar Before the Rolex 24 in January.
A total of 30 entries, including 11 LMP3 machines, took part in the most recent round at Sebring International Raceway in March.
Current LMP3 machinery will continue to be eligible to compete in the VP Racing Challenge through the end of the 2026 season.