Countdown to the start of the 2022 IMSA season from Daytona

Monday, January 10, 2022

As things stand now with little over a day remaining before the closing of the entry window and then just a further nine days before the start of track activity at the official test for the opening round of the 2022 IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championship and supporting Michelin Pilot Challenge, we wait with bated breath to see just how many Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTD’s and GT4’s will be entered this season.

Again this year, the Roar before the 24 test weekend lays just one week ahead of the start of official proceedings for the opening rounds of the IMSA season with the Qualifying race at the Roar also setting the grid for the start of the Rolex 24 within the Weathertech Sportscar Championship. For IMSA, this year will have seen the demise of the GTLM Class in favour of the more sustainable GTD Pro class which will again fit in between the protype classes and the GTD class for Pro-Am squads.

What we know already is that we do expect to see at least three Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GTD’s at Daytona International Speedway for next weekend and the weekend after – one from the nearly converted Magnus Racing Team competing within the endurance rounds only so far (with the Rolex 24 is also the opening round of that Championship) within the GTD class and also with a pair of Aston’s from the Heart of Racing team as they not only defend their Sprint Cup crown in GTD but also step up to the new GTD Pro class with a whole new team of drivers as well.

Roman de Angelis rides again with the team, this time in the #27 car alongside co-drivers (for Daytona) in Tom Gamble, Darren Turner and Ian James whilst their #27 Pro class car will be driven by Ross Gunn, Alex Riberas and Maxime Martin, all very familiar names but not necessarily in the same sentence before!

At Daytona we will also have the opening round of the supporting Michelin Pilot Challenge Series – a series that was somewhat electrified by the competitive battles from and between both the Volt Racing and Notlad Racing AMR Vantage GT4 teams as well as a part season appearance from the locally based Automatic Racing team.

Sadly for us, both Pat Gallagher and Stevan McAleer have both (and rightly for them) found GT3 seats for the season so their always brightly liveried Notlad Aston will not be visible on track at least not at a national level for another season whilst owner Matt Dalton continues with his post-accident rehabilitation with only local/State sanctioned events possible for them this year.

Whilst there has been no officially confirmation of this, we do expect Alan Brynjolfsson to return with his Volt Racing AMR – a car that he shared last year with Trent Hindman along with up to possibly two Aston’s from the Automatic Racing competing again under the name of Stoner Car Care.

Traditionally, entries into these IMSA Championships are not officially confirmed until much closer to the start of the Roar before the 24 test and then you still have potential complications caused again by COVID with international transport. Then again, there is always the potential for entries in addition to those stated (and we do await the confirmation of the Northwest AMR Vantage in GTD) and that would make for a pleasant surprise!!

All these teams stated, together with whoever else turns up in Florida next week sporting an AMR badged car will be serviced by those at CSJ Motorsport!

Photo credits – HoRT / CSJ Motorsport / MPC / F Lagunas

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