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Old 07-28-2017, 12:47 PM
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IMSA out at COTA, in at Mid Ohio in 2018

Just announced today. Sounds good to me, Ohio is much closer to me than Texas lol.

IMSA Announces Mid-Ohio Return - Sportscar365

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In a news conference this morning at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, International Motor Sports Association President Scott Atherton and Mid-Ohio President Craig Rust jointly announced the return of IMSA racing to the historic, 2.258-mile road course on the weekend of May 4-6, 2018.

The event weekend will be headlined by the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, which will compete at Mid-Ohio for the first time. In addition, the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge will return for the first time since 2013.

“Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course has a long and storied history of hosting world-class sports car races in front of a loyal and knowledgeable fanbase,” said Atherton. “We will build on that legacy next May with a field of Prototype and GT race cars that represent the pinnacle of the sport.

“Many of our stakeholders have long been supportive and quite vocal regarding a return to Mid-Ohio and we are pleased that we can finally say ‘We’re back.’”

The most recent top-level IMSA race to be held at Mid-Ohio was a GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series event on June 15, 2013 won overall by Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi, who went on to win back-to-back WeatherTech Championship Prototype titles in 2014 and 2015.

The American Le Mans Series (ALMS) raced at Mid-Ohio for the final time on Aug. 5, 2012 won overall by co-drivers Lucas Luhr and Klaus Graf.

There were a total of 13 GRAND-AM races and 11 ALMS events at Mid-Ohio. GRAND-AM and the ALMS merged following the 2013 season to form the WeatherTech Championship, which began operation in 2014.

“We are thrilled to announce that the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will be joining our schedule in 2018. It is a great way to kick off our season,” said Rust.

““We have a tremendous following of sports car fans, and they ask us every year when we might be able to bring the IMSA series to Mid-Ohio. We are very proud that we were able to work with Scott Atherton and his team to get this done for them, for us – and most importantly for our fans.”

As part of the announcement, it also was confirmed that IMSA will not be returning to Circuit of The Americas in 2018. IMSA and Circuit of The Americas mutually agreed on the decision and the two companies continue to have a positive, healthy relationship. Both are open to working together again in the future.

Entire 2018 schedules for the WeatherTech Championship and Continental Tire Challenge will be announced next Friday, Aug. 4 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
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Old 07-29-2017, 11:14 AM
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Great news. I'll still be in Cleveland then. It has snowed in May here before though.
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Old 07-30-2017, 08:48 AM
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I didnt like all the run-off-- took away the penalty of exceeding the limit. Plus exceeding the track limits was hard to enforce. But my guess is it was a financial.
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:22 AM
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Glad Mid Ohio got the date. Great track and huge association with Honda, so good business move too.

With WEC and IMSA dropping the COTA dates, makes you wonder about how that track moves forward.
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Old 07-30-2017, 10:00 AM
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I was at CoTA for the IMSA race this year. It was the worst experience I've ever had at a race. It was pretty clear neither really cared to have a race there so I'm glad a change was made. It's likely the last time I'll ever go to CoTA.
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Old 07-30-2017, 11:31 PM
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Originally Posted by RWatters View Post
I was at CoTA for the IMSA race this year. It was the worst experience I've ever had at a race. It was pretty clear neither really cared to have a race there so I'm glad a change was made. It's likely the last time I'll ever go to CoTA.
Out of curiosity what made it so bad? Viewing access? General treatment?
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Old 07-31-2017, 09:54 AM
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In other news and not to spread rumors but it seems Lime Rock is regarded as only 50/50 at this point. I guess we'll know more next week.
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Old 07-31-2017, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Ky1e View Post
Out of curiosity what made it so bad? Viewing access? General treatment?
On the practice days they had one stand open inside the track but had free water stations throughout the facility as it was hot.

On race day, they had only one vendor open inside the track and no free water stations placed anywhere. There were 10x the people there. It was the hottest day of the weekend by far with temperatures well into the 90s and no wind to speak of inside the track. The pop up vendors driving around were completely out of water and only had beer. The one stand that was open had lines that took over an hour to get through. People desperate for water were literally passing out in line before they got to the front so there was an ambulance stationed at the vendors location so that they could treat people as it was happening. I watched three different people drop to the ground while waiting in line. Without the ambulance there it could've been a very serious situation.

They allowed you to bring in one unopened bottle of water but you had to forfeit it by throwing it into the trash if you wanted to participate in the grid walk. No one had any idea that they were basically throwing away their own supply of water (unless they wanted to wait in the insane lines) when they walked onto the grid.

The PA system was bragging about how the facility was the best in America hosting the premier racing series in the America. How they thought they'd get away with having one station open for the amount of people that were there absolutely boggles the mind.

I was really rooting for you guys BTW. When I explained your story to the people around me it turned into a whole section cheering for you.
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Old 07-31-2017, 12:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Ky1e View Post
Out of curiosity what made it so bad? Viewing access? General treatment?
I'd say COTA's marketing & low event turnout, it's horrible.
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Old 07-31-2017, 12:45 PM
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COTA is just another boring Tilketrack. Seriously, is he the only guy in the world capable of designing a racing circuit? I'm glad that a legacy track like Mid Ohio is getting more dates.
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Old 07-31-2017, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by RWatters View Post

I was really rooting for you guys BTW. When I explained your story to the people around me it turned into a whole section cheering for you.
Thank you! I wish we had a better performance but our McLaren turbo started leaking 30 minutes into the race, we dropped power and eventually the hot gasses leaking from the turbo started melting things in the engine compartment-- as in holes through the valve cover, wiring, etc! So we had to end the race early and do another engine out service on the car... just another reason I ditched the McLarens and bought the Ford Mustang GT4.

I agree with COTA being a boring track to drive-- no risk/reward.
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:11 PM
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I have the same observations. Me and my son waited over an hour in line just to get a burger and drink as there was only one vender open. The water situation was almost criminal and left us feeling like we were very badly cared for at the event. The teams themselves were great, the racing as usual at COTA was few and far between as we've come accustomed to. Good luck with the rest of the season Alan we always keep an eye out for you on the telecasts!

Jason
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Old 08-02-2017, 09:06 AM
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Just a suggestion, but perhaps if you folks with COTA experiences started a dedicated post about these matters - perhaps in the "Texas" section - then maybe future misery could be avoided. Those stories are atrocious, and something needs to be done about it.
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Old 08-02-2017, 09:31 AM
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Glad to see. I have several friends who live in Ohio and were wishing they would get IMSA back again. Good racing fans and a great track.
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Old 08-12-2017, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by GuyIncognito View Post
Glad Mid Ohio got the date. Great track and huge association with Honda, so good business move too.

With WEC and IMSA dropping the COTA dates, makes you wonder about how that track moves forward.
WEC dropping COTA? I know there have been rumors, but did I miss an announcement?
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Old 08-12-2017, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by hairy_scotsman View Post
WEC dropping COTA? I know there have been rumors, but did I miss an announcement?
I don't think that there have been any announcements but discussions about a possibly reduced WEC calendar started back in May.
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Old 08-12-2017, 08:02 AM
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I don't think that there have been any announcements but discussions about a possibly reduced WEC calendar started back in May.
Could the WEC not have at least one race in the States?

If the endurance series wants to keep its status of "world championship", it must have races on several continents, according to the FIA. Europe and Asia are covered already.

So, which US track could replace COTA?

My favourite track would be Sebring, but it's already part of IMSA.
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Old 08-12-2017, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hairy_scotsman View Post
WEC dropping COTA? I know there have been rumors, but did I miss an announcement?
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_stig View Post
I don't think that there have been any announcements but discussions about a possibly reduced WEC calendar started back in May.
Quote:
Originally Posted by william View Post
Could the WEC not have at least one race in the States?

If the endurance series wants to keep its status of "world championship", it must have races on several continents, according to the FIA. Europe and Asia are covered already.

So, which US track could replace COTA?

My favourite track would be Sebring, but it's already part of IMSA.
apologies, I posted rumor as fact. it does seem like the WEC is going to make a decision between Mexico and Austin for '18. we'll see who keeps it. COTA's track record at keeping events isn't great.

if they keep a race in the US, I really wish they'd do a combined event (not a combined weekend) with IMSA at either Daytona, Sebring or Petit/Road Atlanta. the Petit races with the factory LMP1 cars were breathtaking.
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by GuyIncognito View Post
if they keep a race in the US, I really wish they'd do a combined event (not a combined weekend) with IMSA at either Daytona, Sebring or Petit/Road Atlanta. the Petit races with the factory LMP1 cars were breathtaking.
Watkins Glen would work too...I just doubt the powers that be will make a combined happen these days.
If I recall correctly it's been since the late '70s, early '80s, no? Back then, the teams were running for two different championships...the IMSA Camel GT and the World Sportscar Championship. After that the furriners came over for the races (but not for their respective championships points)...just the prestige. Same as IMSA teams going to Le Mans...they receive no points towards the IMSA championship whilst there.
Nowadays egos seem to prevail in what's allowed and what's not.
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Old 08-13-2017, 06:48 AM
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Originally Posted by lorenzobandini View Post
Watkins Glen would work too...I just doubt the powers that be will make a combined happen these days.
If I recall correctly it's been since the late '70s, early '80s, no? Back then, the teams were running for two different championships...the IMSA Camel GT and the World Sportscar Championship. After that the furriners came over for the races (but not for their respective championships points)...just the prestige. Same as IMSA teams going to Le Mans...they receive no points towards the IMSA championship whilst there.
Nowadays egos seem to prevail in what's allowed and what's not.
Sebring and Petit were combined in 2011/2012.

And while I give IMSA a lot of (well deserved) crap, they wanted to play nice....the ACO and FIA screwed things up.
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