JDC-Miller Motorsports has elected to forgo its automatic invite to this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, due to funding issues surrounding its planned Oreca 07 Gibson effort for the French endurance classic.
The Minnesota-based team was awarded the entry courtesy of Misha Goikhberg winning the Jim Trueman Award as the top sportsman in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Prototype class last year.
“After spending the past several months working towards participating in the event, the team regretfully informed IMSA, the ACO and their partners that some unexpected challenges came up late in the planning process,” the team said in an official statement.
“The team was unable to finalize arrangements that would have allowed them to be as competitive as they required for running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year.
“JDC-Miller Motorsports would like to thank IMSA for their efforts in trying to work with the team to find a solution.
“The team would also like to apologize to IMSA and the ACO for being unable to fulfill the awarded invitation and any related difficulties caused to either organization.”
Ben Keating, the other recipient of IMSA’s two auto invites, has confirmed his entry, a Ferrari 488 GTE under the Keating Motorsports banner for himself, Jeroen Bleekemolen and a third, to-be-announced Silver-rated driver.
Keating’s entry will be run by Risi Competizione, which has elected to not return to the GTE-Pro class this year.
Scuderia Corsa, BAR1 on Reserve List
Fellow WeatherTech Championship teams Scuderia Corsa and BAR1 Motorsports, meanwhile, are on the reserve list for this year’s race.
The three-time and defending GT Daytona class champions, which claimed Le Mans GTE-Am class honors in 2016, had submitted two entry requests, with neither being confirmed for the race.
Its No. 62 car, with nominated driver Cooper MacNeil, sits fifth on the reserve list, with the Brian Alder-led BAR1 effort, with its Riley Mk. 30 Gibson, ninth of nine reserves.
Alder had targeting a Le Mans debut this year with his heavily revised LMP2 car.