A storied tradition is coming back to Daytona International Speedway. A summer classic at the iconic track for many years – the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – will make its historic return to the 2.5-mile venue this Independence Day, July 4, featuring an evening race with a LIVE television broadcast by NBCSN. At the current time, the event will compete without fans in attendance.
The event, which competed at the 3.56-mile high-banked tri-oval/infield road course from 2002-2010, kicks off the return to racing and a revised 2020 calendar for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship as a result of the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The 2 hour, 40-minute race will consist of three classes - Daytona Prototype international (DPi), GT Le Mans (GTLM) and GT Daytona (GTD). The announcement was made as part of an overall revised 2020 schedule made by the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Friday.
“We’re going back to our roots, taking a grand step back in time,” said Daytona International Speedway President Chip Wile. “Some of IMSA’ s WeatherTech Sports Car Championship most historic moments happened here, and there have been many memorable names that have conquered Daytona. We look forward to having IMSA back this summer to kick off their return to racing.”
The last winning team for a summer IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship event at Daytona in 2010 was a BMW Riley co-driven by Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas. Known at one point and time as the Paul Revere 250, the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship was a staple of Daytona International Speedway from 1967-1985, before taking a hiatus from 1986-99, then again in 2001. Parnelli Jones was the victor in the first race in ’67, and noted drivers like Al Holbert, Pete Gregg, Hurley Haywood, Willy T. Ribbs, Elliott Forbes-Robinson and many others have gone to Gatorade Victory Lane at Daytona.
“IMSA is grateful to all of our promoter partners for collaborating with us to develop a revised schedule of outstanding events,” said IMSA President John Doonan. “Our No. 1 priority since March has been to get back to racing as safely and as quickly as possible, and this revised schedule is evidence of that. We appreciate the patience, cooperation, and input of our IMSA stakeholders, and we all are very much looking forward to going racing again this summer and putting on amazing races for our audience.”
After Daytona, IMSA will make visits to Sebring International Raceway, Road America, VIRginia International Raceway and WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca to complete the summer run. The updated season schedule can be found at www.imsa.com/weathertech.
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