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Salters: WEC Hypercar Program Would Be Honda Decision

HPD’s position on ARX-06’s potential expansion to WEC remains unchanged according to David Salters…

Photo: Mike Levitt/IMSA

The potential of having the Acura ARX-06 compete in the FIA World Endurance Championship would be a global Honda decision according to Honda Performance Development President David Salters, who has reaffirmed Acura/HPD’s position, which remains unchanged.

It comes in the wake of Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Autosport’s ambitions of entering the world championship’s Hypercar class within the “next few years” according to new team co-owner Michael Andretti.

WTR Andretti and Meyer Shank Racing are set to give the ARX-06 LMDh car its competition debut in this weekend’s Rolex 24 at Daytona as part of its focused effort in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

Speaking with Sportscar365, Salters, who heads up the California-based motorsports arm of Honda North America, indicated that the ARX-06 would need to be badged as a Honda overseas, as is is the case with the Acura NSX GT3 Evo22 that competes in several GT3 championships in Europe.

“Acura is North America; we need to do a good job here,” Salters said. “So far so good. That is what’s Acura is doing.

“If we go outside and look at different series with this car — WEC — that’s down to Honda. It’s not changed.

“Does everyone want to do it? Does Dave [Salters] want to do it… does Michael [Andretti] want to do it? I’m sure we all want to do it.

“But it’s down to Honda and it’s got to be worthwhile. It needs to fit in with marketing strategies, all that kind of stuff.

“That’s the point of doing this in the end. There are still those base requirements.”

Salters wouldn’t say if he felt the ARX-06, developed in partnership with ORECA, would be ready to take on another championship next year, stressing that the decision is out of HPD’s hands.

“To be super clear, it’s down to Honda,” he said. “We’re very respectful of Honda’s global motorsport strategy, so let’s see.

“We have a very good relationship with the people in the motorsport group at Honda.

“They’re first class, world championship-winning F1. They know the motorsport better than any of us and have to figure out what makes sense. Let’s see and see where we get to.

“The first job is for us doing a good job here. We have to do a good job here and show that the car has got credentials and then let’s see what happens.

“It needs to make sense. Let’s see if it makes sense to Honda.”

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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