East side to the west side: IMSA heads from Florida to California
After kick-starting their IMSA campaign with the two longest races of the year - the Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, Inception Racing head to the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach which is one of the two shortest races on this year’s calendar in time, 100 minutes.
Not only that, the concrete-lined twists and turns of Long Beach will present the Inception Racing drivers and with their first ever street race in a GT car - a vast difference from the distinct high speeds of the Daytona International Speedway and the bone-jarring bumps of Sebring International Raceway.
This weekend’s (April 8 - 9) marks the start of the WeatherTech Sprint Cup season - an eight-race calendar which is exclusive to the GTD class. The absence of the Le Mans Prototype 2 (LMP2) and Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) classes means less than 30 cars are expected to take the green flag when the race commences on Saturday afternoon.
“A street course is all about making sure the car stays out of the wall”, states Bas Leinders, Inception Racing Team Manager. “It’s also making sure you stay out of trouble and build on pace as the race progresses”, he later adds. It makes calling strategy absolutely crucial as the race is likely to include only one pit stop for fuel and a mandatory driver change.
Brendan Iribe will be joined by Frederik Schandorff, whom, alongside Ollie Millroy, raced last weekend in the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS season opener in Imola.
WeatherTech Championship practices are set for 20:15 and 00:15 GMT Friday, with qualifying to be streamed live on IMSA.com/TVLive at 04:10 am Saturday. The race airs live at 01:00 am Sunday (17:00 ET) on USA Network, Peacock, and IMSA Radio.