The 2023 24 Hours of Le Mans leads off this week’s Motorsport Series News Roundup as the event celebrates 100 years with a bumper grid.
In addition to that sportscar classic, the Macau Grand Prix will take place over two weeks, F1 Academy reveals their inaugural 2023 schedule, SCORE International goes heavy metal and more.
All this in this week’s Motorsport Series News Roundup on Motorsport Prospects.
The 24 Hours of Le Mans will have 16 entries line up in Hypercar at the front of a 62-car field this year. Event organizer the ACO on Monday issued the first version of the entry list for the 91st running of the French endurance classic on June 10-11. It also includes 24 entries in LMP2, 21 in GTE-Am and confirmation of Hendrick Motorsports’ modified Chevrolet Camaro NASCAR Cup car as an ‘Innovative’ entry.
The entry list for the 8th season of the ELMS-supporting Michelin Le Mans Cup has been revealed ahead of the season opener in Barcelona. The list features a field of 42 cars, with 30 of them in the LMP3 class and the remaining 12 in the GT3 category. In addition to the 42 cars named in the two aforementioned classes the H24 hydrogen-powered LMP3-based prototype is set to join the field for a select number of races during the season as an ‘innovative car’ in its own class, with Norman Nato and Stephane Richelmi named as the H24 Racing team’s pair of drivers.
The Super Taikyu Organisation (STO) have announced their provisional full-season entry list for the upcoming 2023 Eneos Super Taikyu Series powered by Hankook. Japan’s Pro-Am endurance championship has 62 cars registered across their nine classes, though we can expect a few one-off and part-time entries throughout the course of the season. 41 of these cars will take part in the official pre-season test at Fuji Speedway on tomorrow.
GT America begins its 2023 season on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, where a field of 23 cars has signed up to enter the first round of SRO America’s multi-class sprint championship on 3-5 March. Supporting the IndyCar Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, the field is comprised of 12 GT3 cars competing in the ‘SRO3’ class and 11 GT4 cars.
This year’s Macau Grand Prix event may take the unusual move of taking place over two weeks, the organizers have revealed. The event will feature Chinese F4 again this November, and be its fifth and final round of the season, but a specific date has not been set due to the plans being made by the Macau Grand Prix Organizing Committee (MGPOC). “The MGPOC is currently working towards a race programme for the 70th Macau GP that will take place over two weekends,” its secretary general See Lei wrote to Formula Scout. “The MGPOC is in constant communication with the FIA with the target of bringing FIA World Cup events, including the FIA F3 World Cup, to the Macau GP this year.”
In other F3 news, the FIA Formula 3 Championship has determined the qualifying format it will use on its first trip to the streets of Monaco. Formula Scout has all the details.
Formula 2 is looking at holding a round between Formula 1’s final European race in September and November’s Abu Dhabi season finale for future campaigns. “I’m not happy with that [gap],” F2’s promoter Bruno Michel said. “Because either we have a winner already three months before the end of the season, or otherwise we don’t have a winner, but everybody forgets in the meantime what’s at stake for the last race. So it’s not good. And that’s what we had already last year. Of course, we’re looking at different possibilities to try to get some races in the middle, but that’s also coming in to the cost equation that we were talking about.”
Indy NXT has modified its schedule to include a stop at the Brickyard weekend featuring the NTT IndyCar Series and NASCAR Cup Series on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, on August 11.
F1 Academy has revealed the calendar and format for its inaugural season of racing, with the all-women series set to feature seven events, with 21 races in total – including a season finale alongside a Formula 1 weekend. Designed to feature as many F1 tracks as possible, the calendar provides an opportunity for the 15 drivers to compete on a variety of challenging circuits, helping to develop their technical skills and prepare them to progress to higher levels of competition.
Skip Barber Racing School has announced a $500,000 prize package for the 2023 Skip Barber Race Series season, with the overall Champion earning the grand prize of a $100,000 USF Juniors scholarship. The expanded series, taking place over eight race weekends, will be run on select SRO Motorsports America, USAC, and USF Pro Championship race weekends which means there are also excellent opportunities to network.
Graduates of the Skip Barber Racing School 2-Day Advanced Formula Racing School and those with valid racing licenses are eligible to compete in the Skip Barber Race Series. The arrive-and-drive race series combines the expert coaching of Skip Barber instructors with a true spec series, utilizing state-of-the-art Mygale Formula cars, offering a premier amateur racing environment at world-class North American tracks. Equalized race cars and a focus on driver development allow a driver’s true talent to determine the race outcome.
The complete prize package is as follows:
Overall Champion: $100,000 USF Juniors Scholarship
Overall Second Place: Full Season in 2024 Skip Barber Race Series
Overall Third Place: Half Season in 2024 Skip Barber Race Series
Masters Champion: Full Season in 2024 Skip Barber Race Series
Masters Second Place: Half Season in 2024 Skip Barber Race Series
Masters Third Place: Single Race in 2024 Skip Barber Race Series
Rally & Raid
Ahead of the 2023 season, SCORE International has created the Heavy Metal Limited class. It will be intended for pickup trucks and SUVs that are stock in nearly every specification save for obvious modifications for racing, with vehicles like the new Ford Bronco DR being eligible.
When the Mint 400 returns on 8–12 March, there will be some unique company on the card as Formula DRIFT will be heavily involved throughout the week. The drift championship will conduct exhibitions at the start/finish midway in Primm while also joining the parade of entries in Las Vegas.
When the 2023 FIM Bajas World Cup began with the Saudi Baja in early February, the Dubai International Baja was set as the final round but without a confirmed date. The last three races have now had their slots set, with Dubai being bumped to the penultimate race while the Jordan Baja is now the finale.
Miscellaneous Racing Series
A ‘hard reset’ of Targa style tarmac rallies in Australia will take place in the coming months, following the release of the Targa Review Panel Report. The Motorsport Australia Board has now reviewed and considered the Report, with the Board agreeing to accept all recommendations and begin their implementation immediately. Motorsport Australia has today released the report in full, allowing members of the tarmac rally community and the motorsport community more broadly the opportunity to understand the reasons behind the recommendations. A total of 94 recommendations will be implemented across the discipline to allow events to resume.
- AF Corse Enters Five Cars In GT Open
- Ferrari continues in DTM with Emil Frey Racing
- Prema Won’t Utilize Option of Additional Third LMP2 Entry
- Heart of Racing Confirm Two-Car Aston Martin GT4 Effort
- K-PAX Returns to Endurance Cup With Lamborghini
- Blackdog Speed Shop Returns With Gaples in Camaro GT4.R
- Honda Set for Sprint Cup Debut With Nova Race
- R Racing Confirms Miller & Hopkins For British GT
- Two-Car GT Open Assault For Oregon Team
- Feller & Van Der Linde Rejoin ABT For 2023 DTM Season
- Team WRT Confirm Two More BMW M4 GT3s For Sprint & Endurance Cup