September 22, 2013, 4:00 PM
The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) has announced a 12-race schedule for the inaugural 2014 season of the United SportsCar Championship, including one race in Canada, at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park (Mosport), on July 13, 2014.
"Sports car racing has played a major role in Canadian Tire Motorsport Park’s rich history and in 2014 we will be fortunate enough to continue that legacy," said Myles Brandt, the track's president and general manager.
The Mosport race will, in effect, replace the ALMS races that ran at that historic venue from 1999 through 2013.
IMSA will be the sanctioning body of the United SportsCar Championship, which is the new road-racing series resulting from the merger of the American Le Mans Series (presented by Tequila Patrón) and the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series.
Title sponsor for the new series will be Tudor, a brand of Swiss watches made by Rolex.
All 12 races will be held at venues that currently host races in one or both of the merging series. They include stops at Daytona, Sebring, Indianapolis and the Circuit of the Americas, as well as several shared weekends at the same tracks as the IndyCar series.
Four classes of cars that will compete in the new championship: Prototype, Prototype Challenge, GT Le Mans and GT Daytona. Eligible for the top Prototype class will be cars currently competing in the Grand Am's Daytona Prototype class and Le Mans P2 class, plus the new DeltaWing DWC13 from the ALMS.
IMSA will also sanction two junior series – the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge and the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites powered by Mazda.
In addition, it will continue sanctioning the Ferrari Challenge, Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama in the U.S., Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Michelin and Lamborghini Super Trofeo series.
As well as sanctioning these racing series, IMSA is the exclusive North-American partner of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), which runs the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The partnership enables "selected" Tudor United SportsCar Championship competitors to earn automatic entries in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
"This is, without a doubt, the best sports car schedule in the history of North America," said IMSA president and COO, Scott Atherton, calling it, "Overall, a dream schedule, indeed."
The full 2014 Tudor United SportsCar Championship Schedule is as follows:
Jan 25-26 Daytona International Speedway
Mar 15 Sebring International Raceway
Apr 12 Long Beach Street Circuit
May 4 Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
May 31 Detroit Belle Isle
Jun 29 Watkins Glen International
Jul 13 Canadian Tire Motorsport Park
Jul 25 Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Aug 10 Road America
Aug 24 Virginia International Raceway
Sep 20 Circuit of The Americas
Oct 4 Road Atlanta
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gerry has been an automotive journalist for more than 20 years. He is a former automotive engineer and three-time winner of the AJAC Automotive Journalist of the year award.
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