When the 2017 FIA Word Endurance Championship season will start on Easter weekend at Silverstone, the popular "Dane Train" Aston Martin Vantage GTE will defend it’s World Championship title in the GTE-Pro class, but with a small difference. While the car will continue in the FIA WEC with Aston Martin Racing, Young Driver AMR, the operation behind the #95 entry, will make a pit stop in 2017. Since 2010, Young Driver AMR campaigned Aston Martin racecars in various championships and took 16 victories and two World Championship titles in 90 races.
Ferrari WEC Reaches Agreement with Alessandro Pier Guidi
Ferrari has reached a technical and racing agreement with Alessandro Pier Guidi. The Italian driver will compete in the 2017 season of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) pairing up with James Calado in the 488 GTE no. 51 managed on the track by the AF Corse team.
IMSA News Roundup: 34 Entries Set for Sebring Test Next Week
Steven Cole Smith, IMSA Wire Service
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The next round of the 2017 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship is America’s oldest professional sports car endurance race, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida set for Saturday, March 18.
And while IMSA competitors are still basking in the glory of a successful season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona last month, they’re also ready to get back to business. They’ll get that chance the end of next week in a two-day IMSA-sanctioned test at Sebring International Raceway on Thursday and Friday, Feb. 23-24.
According to the entry list (attached) released today from IMSA, 34 cars are expected to participate in the test across the four classes. The Prototype class has a 10-car entry, including Rolex 24 winners Jordan and Ricky Taylor in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPI-V.R. The Taylor brothers will be joined by their new endurance racing teammate, Briton Alex Lynn, who replaces the newly retired Max Angelelli. Of course, retired NASCAR superstar Jeff Gordon also was part of the Daytona-winning lineup.
IMSA Announces Additional Updates To 2017 FOX Sports Television Package
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 10, 2017) - On the heels of a successful 55th Rolex 24 At Daytona, IMSA and FOX Sports announced additional television coverage and schedule updates for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and also released the 2017 Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge television schedule. In addition, IMSA and FOX Sports announced that the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda will have FS2 television coverage throughout the 2017 season.
"Our partnership with FOX Sports continues to pay dividends," said IMSA Vice President, Marketing, David Pettit. "Between the additional improvements we’ve made to the WeatherTech Championship television schedule, the continuation of a strong FS1 package for the Continental Tire Challenge and the introduction of FS2 coverage for IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda, we head into the 2017 season in an extremely strong position from a domestic television perspective."
Reigning European Le Mans Series (ELMS) GTE Champions Beechdean Aston Martin Racing have announced they will return to the championship in an updated factory Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GTE car in 2017 with Andrew Howard, Darren Turner and Ross Gunn.
Andrew Howard, Beechdean AMR team owner and driver, will be teaming back up with Aston Martin Racing Veteran Darren Turner. Howard and Turner, together with Alex Macdowall in 2016, took two race victories in their debut ELMS season on their way to championship victory.
The experienced duo will be joined in the #99 car by Aston Martin Racing Factory driver Ross Gunn. Gunn, 20, will continue with the Beechdean AMR squad for a third successive year, making his ELMS race debut at Silverstone in April.
The 55th Rolex 24 At Daytona likely will be remembered as a watershed moment in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship history.
On the racetrack, the event saw the competition debut of 12 brand-new Daytona Prototype international (DPi) and LM P2 race cars in the series’ top Prototype class, as well as a new car from Porsche in the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class and the WeatherTech Championship debut for Mercedes-AMG, Lexus and Acura in the GT Daytona (GTD) class.
In total, 14 manufacturers participated in the Rolex 24, and the margin of victory was under a second in the P and GTD classes, and less than three seconds in GTLM at the end of a grueling 24 hours of competition in sometimes extremely difficult weather conditions. Five cars, representing three different manufacturers or constructors led the race in the Prototype class. Ten different cars led the race in GTLM and 15 different cars led in GTD, including each of the aforementioned newcomers.
IMSA Notebook: Two Drivers Break Record for Youngest Rolex 24 Winner
Staff Report, IMSA Wire Service
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - When the checkered flag dropped on Sunday afternoon after the 55th Rolex 24 At Daytona, two drivers found themselves breaking a race record that dates back more than 30 years.
Michael de Quesada, co-driver of the No. 28 Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R, and Patricio O’Ward, in the No. 38 Performance Tech ORECA FLM09, won in GT Daytona and Prototype Challenge, respectively. De Quesada is 17 years, 63 days old, while O’Ward is 17 years, 239 days old, and both smashed the record for the youngest driver to win the Rolex 24 At Daytona.
"It’s incredible," said de Quesada. "I was there in 2007 when my dad (Carlos de Quesada) won, and since then have dreamed about winning myself. It was the 10-year anniversary since my dad’s first win, which makes it even more special. The dream kept going because I was in a Porsche also, plus doing it with incredible guys like Daniel (Morad), Jesse (Lazare), Mike (Christensen) and my dad was amazing."
Manor are delighted to announce that they will race in the 2017 World Endurance Championship and the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans under the new Chinese banner CEFC MANOR TRS RACING.
Chinese company Talent Racing Sports (TRS) and Manor will work closely together to create a competitive Chinese team in WEC. TRS originally supported Team China Racing in the FIA Formula E Championship in 2014, before expanding its involvement into the World Endurance Championship with CEFC-BaXi DC Racing Alpine in 2016. The deal marks the second year of involvement in WEC for China CEFC Energy Company Limited (CEFC), Baxi Ice Cream and TRS. CEFC MANOR TRS RACING will race with two ORECA 07 Gibsons in the 2017 Championship.
ByKOLLES Racing will start the 2017 World Endurance Championship (WEC) season with a well-known driver. Ex-Formula One driver Robert Kubica (32/POL) will take turns in driving the CLM P1/01 Nismo together with Brit Oliver Webb (25). The third driver for the FIA WEC races, including the Le Mans 24 Hours 2017, will be announced at a later stage. Oliver Webb is known to the private LMP1 team ByKOLLES Racing from his commitments during last season. After many good results in Formula One and several years in Rally, Robert Kubica will return to circuit racing and make his debut in Le Mans in June.
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