PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports is unlikely to race its second Oreca 07 Gibson in the Rolex 24 at Daytona after being unable to secure the necessary budget and drivers, according to team principal Bobby Oergel.
The California-based team entered a second LMP2 car for the first time at this weekend’s Roar Before the Rolex 24 with the hope of running both Orecas in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season-opener.
However, barring any last-minute deals, Oergel doesn’t see the opportunity materializing.
“It’s pretty much not going to be able to happen for the 24, the way we [currently] sit,” Oergel told Sportscar365. “There’s not a proper program that could be put in place.
“It’s getting pretty short. It needed to happen here. It’s looking to be a stretch.
“The scenario is really sad because we had two cars ready to go.”
The team confirmed on Friday its driver lineup for the No. 52 Oreca, which has been committed to the full seven-round LMP2 season.
Simon Trummer, Nick Boulle, Ben Keating and Gabriel Aubry will drive the car in the Rolex 24, with one of the four staying on for the remainder of the year.
With Ben Keating being the team’s only Bronze-rated driver and is committed for Daytona only, PR1’s second yet-to-be-announced season-long driver must be Bronze per IMSA’s new-for-2020 rules.
The brand-new No. 51 Oreca, which is in the Daytona paddock this weekend (pictured above) recently completed a two-day shakedown at Buttonwillow.
Oergel said he’s not giving up on it appearing in other races later this season.
“We’re working on it for Sebring,” he said. “We were working on it just up until this week, until yesterday, to try for the Rolex 24.”
The likely withdrawal of the No. 51 PR1/Mathiasen Oreca will result in a six-car LMP2 field and 39 overall cars for the race.