The new GTP formula in IMSA has taken North American motorsport by storm in 2023. On the grid for the 61st running of the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, out of the seven GTP teams taking the field, six of them have direct affiliation with a currently running IndyCar program.
As both series move into the future, things can be learned and knowledge can be shared within teams to strengthen both programs.
In a panel with the GTP team owners ahead of the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, a few owners spoke on the subject. Michael Andretti recently announced a partnership with Wayne Taylor and the Wayne Taylor Racing GTP team and believes his involvement in IMSA will help his IndyCar efforts as well.
“We feel like when you get in all these different series that you are diluting yourself, I disagree, I think we are making ourselves stronger,” Andretti said. “There is always something to learn from one series to another, and we always try to apply that. We may be doing something in sports cars that is different that might work in IndyCar and vice versa. We are always looking to make ourselves better and learn from each series that we are involved in.”
Michael Andretti has all four of his IndyCar drivers on the grid at the Rolex. Colton Herta is running in the #24 and 25 BMW GTP cars and Devlin DeFrancesco is running in LMP2 with Rick Ware Racing. Kyle Kirkwood and Romain Grosjean found rides in the GT ranks, Grosjean in GTD Pro and Kirkwood in GTD.
IndyCar owner Rodger Penske also found his way into IMSA in 2023, reigniting his partnership with Porsche Motorsport to bring the German manufacture back to top class racing both in IMSA and WEC. Penske is also seeing benefits to his IndyCar program from this partnership.
“It’s not what we are learning, It’s what our drivers are. IndyCar’s drivers having a chance to run in a 24-hour race just gets them better”, “said the Captain to the press.
Penske has two IndyCar drivers in the Rolex this year. Josef Newgarden and Scott McLaughlin both take the grid in the defending champions, #8 Tower Motorsport LMP2 machine with John Farano. Will Power was also attached to the #75 Sun Energy 1 Mercedes, but had to back out of the race with a family emergency. Across the grid 16 drivers are active IndyCar drivers. Each class features at least one and four are racing in the top class at the Rolex.
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