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Sebring IMSA Wednesday Notebook

John Dagys’ first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship notebook from Sebring…

Photo: John Dagys

***IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship teams unloaded Wednesday in preparation for this weekend’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, which will feature a 38-car field for the second round of the season.

***Kyle Masson and Cameron Cassels will be joined by former IMSA Prototype Challenge driver Andrew Evans in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports Oreca 07 Gibson, with European and Asian Le Mans Series veteran Anders Fjordbach completing the lineup in PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports’ Oreca.

***Philipp Frommenwiler has replaced Austin Cindric in the No. 14 AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3 due to Cindric’s NASCAR commitments this weekend while Lawson Aschenbach will make his Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo debut in the No. 47 PPM entry.

***A number of drivers, as well as crew members, are fresh off last weekend’s NTT IndyCar Series season-opener at St. Petersburg, including Acura Team Penske’s Simon Pagenaud and Alexander Rossi, Scott Dixon and Sebastien Bourdais of Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, Colton Herta, as well as Ben Hanley, who is on FIA World Endurance Championship duty. 

***Meyer Shank Racing, which is set for a ten-race IndyCar program, had five of its sports car racing crew in St. Pete as well, in a reduction of shared resources compared to last year. “This year on the IndyCar side, we’ve been able to get more full-time people and make a serious run at it,” team co-owner Mike Shank told Sportscar365.

***P1 Motorsports has undergone a significant shakeup in management since January’s Rolex 24, with both team manager Gary Cummings and lead strategist Kevin Doran out of the JC Perez-owned operation. 

***Incoming Honda Performance Development president Ted Klaus, who takes over from Art St. Cyr on April 1, is getting his first experience of IMSA this weekend. Klaus, who attended last weekend’s IndyCar race, said he saw “precision and professionalism” within HPD. 

***Klaus joins from Honda R&D, where he was project leader for the Acura NSX road car.

***IMSA has adjusted the data logger procedure for teams, which are now given two memory sticks per car that must be exchanged during incremental periods of the race and submitted to the sanctioning body. Per an update in the sporting regulations, the first exchange must take place between Hours 3 and 5, with the second exchange from Hours 7 to 9. 

***A total of 31 Bronze or Silver-rated drivers will be required to complete nighttime laps in Thursday evening’s practice session, which runs from 7:45-9:15 p.m. ET. Click Here for the full list. 

***Former Porsche GT Team engineer David Brown has joined Porsche Motorsport North America in a customer support role. Brown, who is working with customer teams on performance engineering in GT3 and GT4 is understood to have taken on some of the duties formerly held by Owen Hayes.

***Michelin, which has brought more than 16,000 tires for Sebring, estimates that more than 100,000 miles will be run by all four series in action this weekend.

***Patrick Lindsey is set to miss the next GT Daytona round at Mid-Ohio due to his WEC commitments with Team Project 1. While initially looking to fly to Ohio following the Six Hours of Spa on Saturday, the Park Place Motorsports team principal said it would come at a detriment to its IMSA program.

***Lindsey told Sportscar365 they’ve yet to determine who will share the wheel of the No. 73 Porsche 911 GT3 R alongside full-season driver Patrick Long, although indicated they will seek input from Porsche.

***While absent from this weekend’s race, Black Swan Racing is expected to return to action in the California 8 Hours at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca later this month, but without team owner/driver Tim Pappas, who continues his recovery from his accident at Bathurst last month.

***Team Penske president Tim Cindric is recovering from hip replacement surgery last month. Cindric has praised his doctors at the Mayo Clinic for the procedure, which had him up walking within four hours after surgery.

***Tristan Nunez and his band “Acceleration” will be among the entertainment on hand at the Sebring Party Zone this weekend. Nunez is slated to play on Friday at 7 p.m. ET.

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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