United SportsCar Championship

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United SportsCar Championship
2014 United SportsCar Championship season
2014 Tudor United SportsCar Championship logo.jpg
Category Sports car racing
Country or region United States United States
Inaugural season 2014
Prototype Classes Prototype (P), Prototype Challenge (PC)
GT Classes GT Le Mans (GTLM), GT Daytona (GTD)
Official website www.imsa.com

The Tudor United SportsCar Championship (USCC) is a sports car racing series based in the United States and Canada and organized by the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA). It is a result of a merger between two existing North American sports car racing series, the American Le Mans Series and Rolex Sports Car Series. The initial name of the series was announced on March 14, 2013,[1] while Rolex SA signed their Tudor brand to a five year title sponsorship deal.[2]

The 2014 season began with the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona on January 25-26.

History[edit]

On September 5, 2012 it was announced that the Grand-Am Road Racing sanctioning body would be merging with the Braselton based International Motor Sports Association, and as such both bodies would be merging their premiere sports car series, the Rolex Sports Car Series and American Le Mans Series respectively, with plans to debut in 2014. On November 20, 2012 the merger committee announced that SME Branding were selected to develop the name, logo and identity of the new series.[3]

On January 8, 2013, the two series' announced a preliminary class structure for the new merged series. Grand-Am's Daytona Prototype category and IMSA's P2 would combine into a single class, with allowances for the unique DeltaWing to also compete in the new class. The Le Mans Prototype Challenge class of single spec cars from the American Le Mans Series would continue as is, although the cars will switch to Grand-Am's Continental Tires.[4] The GT class of the American Le Mans Series would remain unchanged, while Grand-Am's GT class will form another GT class, and be combined with the American Le Mans GTC category.[5] The only category of cars not represented in the new series is the American Le Mans Series' P1 category.

The reveal date for the new series was March 14, 2013 at the Chateau Élan Hotel and Conference Center at Sebring International Raceway, two days before the 12 Hours of Sebring. American Le Mans CEO Scott Atherton announced the new sanctioning body would remain IMSA while Ed Bennett revealed the new titles for the series' five classes. SME Branding Senior Partner Ed O'Hara then announced the new United SportsCar Racing title and logo, a name submitted through a contest won by Louis Satterlee of Florida, a racer in the Florida Karting Championship Series.[6]

On August 9, 2013 Fox Sports 1 announced it had signed a TV contract with IMSA to televise the entire USCC season between 2014 and 2018.[7]

Later, on September 12, 2013, Tudor was announced as the entitlement sponsor for the series, which was named the United SportsCar Championship (overriding the previous title of United SportsCar Racing).

IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series[edit]

Originally based on a Canadian series before being acquired by Grand-Am, the IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge (originally known as Grand-Am Cup) is a production-based touring car series. The series is split into two classes known as Grand Sport (GS), intended for large capacity GT-style cars, and Street Tuner (ST), consisting of smaller sedans and coupes, some of which are front-wheel drive. The IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge until 2013 supported some Rolex Series races but also headlined some of its own dates. This series continues with the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship The series is somewhat comparable to the old Trans Am Series.

Class structure[edit]

There are four different classes in the United SportsCar Championship series, featuring two sports prototype categories and two grand tourer classes:

  • Prototype (P): the flagship class, combining Grand-Am Daytona Prototype with the American Le Mans Series P2 prototypes and DeltaWing cars, built to 2014 specifications.
  • Prototype Challenge (PC): a spec class carried over directly from the American Le Mans Series, featuring Le Mans Prototype Challenge cars built by Oreca with engines supplied by Chevrolet and tires from Continental.
  • GT Le Mans (GTLM): a continuation of the ALMS GT class, consisting of cars matching the Automobile Club de l'Ouest's GTE specification.
  • GT Daytona (GTD): a class that combines the Grand-Am GT & GX classes with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars from the ALMS GTC class and cars built to FIA GT3 specifications.

Some races may only use selected classes of cars, for example: Any class car may be permitted entry into the Rolex 24, while at the Grand Prix of Long Beach only the Prototype (P) and GT Le Mans (GTLM) will be entered.

Circuits[edit]

Course From To
Canada Canadian Tire Motorsport Park 2014 -
United States Circuit of the Americas 2014 -
United States Daytona International Speedway 2014 -
United States Detroit Belle Isle Street Circuit 2014 -
United States Indianapolis Motor Speedway 2014 2014
United States Kansas Speedway 2014 2014
United States Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca 2014 -
United States Lime Rock Park 2015 -
United States Long Beach Street Circuit 2014 -
United States Road America 2014 -
United States Road Atlanta 2014 -
United States Sebring International Raceway 2014 -
United States Virginia International Raceway 2014 -
United States Watkins Glen International 2014 -

References[edit]

  1. ^ "United SportsCar Racing To Debut In 2014". American Le Mans Series. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  2. ^ "Tudor Named Title Sponsor". Sportscar 365. 12 September 2013. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  3. ^ "SME Branding Selected To Develop Identity for GRAND-AM, ALMS Merger". Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  4. ^ "ALMS: Continental Named New Spec PC Tire". ALMS Communications. 1 March 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "GRAND-AM, ALMS Announce 2014 Class Structure". Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  6. ^ "LOUIS SATTERLEE - 2012 FLORIDA KARTING CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES REVIEW". Karting News Worldwide. 7 July 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "FOX to air United SportsCar Racing". Fox Sports 1. 9 August 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 

External links[edit]