Michelin July Daytona Post-Race

July 4, 2020

Michelin July Daytona Post-Race

July 4, 2020

MICHELIN MAKES SUCCESSFUL RETURN TO COMPETITION IN HISTORIC IMSA DAYTONA JULY RACE

WeatherTech 240 Sees Michelin Restart its 2020 Global Championship Season

Daytona Beach, Fla. (July 4, 2020) – Michelin Motorsport made its global “return to racing” one to remember with an exciting IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship event and an historic milestone for longtime technical partner, Chevrolet Corvette.

Racing for the first time since the COVID-19 global pandemic brought major international  competition to a halt in mid-March, Michelin and the IMSA teams returned to a much different set of challenges at the Daytona International Speedway than found at the season’s first event, the Rolex 24 At Daytona in late January.

“In January we had ambient and track temperatures in the upper 40 degrees (F) range, while this week track temperatures reached 109 degrees,” said Tony Ménard, director of motorsport, Michelin North America.

“Establishing and following all of the necessary protocols, providing the correct tires, logistical planning and support for the teams was a big challenge in the current environment and we are very pleased that the teams were able to race so hard and so well in very changing conditions.”  

The 6:00 p.m. scheduled race start was delayed for 45 minutes by a thunderstorm and lightning and the race began in wet, but drying track conditions.

Mazda led 1-2 in DPi. Photo: Michelin North America

Corvette Racing broke through for a milestone 100th race victory in the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) in the GT Le Mans class. Mazda (DPi) and AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus (GT Daytona) recorded 1-2 finishes in those categories.

The AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus team went 1-2 in GTD. Photo: Michelin North America

“Our congratulations to the Mazda, Corvette, and Lexus teams on their victories and to all of the manufacturers, teams and drivers on their outstanding performance in a wide range of conditions. We look forward to continuing IMSA’s return to competition and hopefully soon, being able to welcome back the IMSA fans,” said Ménard.

Corvette Hits the Century Mark
GTLM podium with Corvette Racing front and center. Photo: Michelin North America

The GT Le Mans class victory for the new mid-engine Corvette C8.R marked the 100th International Motor Sport Association win for Corvette Racing, a Michelin technical partner team since 2004 through four generations of Corvette race cars. Michelin is the exclusive tire provider for all of the new C8 series models.

“Congratulations to Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor on winning today’s IMSA race at Daytona,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President, Performance and Motorsports.

“Their win is twice as special for Chevrolet, as Corvette Racing has now achieved 100 victories in IMSA competition. It also is the first for the new mid-engine Corvette C8.R in just its second race. This milestone win belongs to everyone who has been part of the Corvette program over the years, our Corvette owners and our fans.”

For more on Corvette’s 100th win, and the Corvette C8.R’s first win and pole, check out this MichelinRacingUSA.com piece with a link to some of the team’s memorable photos and race victories.

Michelin Motorsport Post-Race Notes Package: Daytona International Speedway
Inside the Michelin workshop. Photo: Michelin North America

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

  • Class Winners:
    • DPi: Jonathan Bomarito, Harry Tincknell, No. 55 Mazda RT24-P
    • GTLM: Antonio Garcia, Jordan Taylor, No. 3 Corvette C8.R
    • GTD: Jack Hawksworth, Aaron Telitz, No. 14 AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3
  • Wets versus Slicks: Roughly a third of the 26-car field started on MICHELIN® Pilot® Sport GT Rain tires, before those cars switched to dry weather MICHELIN® Pilot Sport slick tires within the opening 20 minutes. The opening track conditions were 77 degrees Fahrenheit ambient and 80 degrees on track, with cloudy skies and a damp but quickly drying track.
  • Clean and Green: The two-hour, 40-minute sprint race ran without a full-course caution. This marks the fourth WeatherTech Championship race in the last seven races overall (Lime Rock, Road America, Monterey 2019) where the series ran without a single yellow flag, and fourth in the last five sprint races. The 26 cars entered in the three IMSA WeatherTech Championship classes completed more than 2,700 laps of the 3.56-mile Daytona circuit without a single caution flag as 25 of the 26 cars entered finished the two-hour-40 minute race.
  • Temperature Check: The two days of on-track running at Daytona in July did feature hotter temperatures than in January, but not necessarily as hot as expected. Michelin’s harder compound worked through a range of 78 degrees track temperature up to a high of 109 recorded in Saturday qualifying.
  • Michelin Tire Tech Tip Minute: Michelin worked closely with IMSA to determine protocols for the return to racing at Daytona. See a bit more here in NBC Sports’ Michelin Tire Tech Tip Minute, with NBC reporter Parker Kligerman.  
Next Up:

IMSA continues its 2020 season at Sebring International Raceway, July 17-18, 2020.

The WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Cadillac Grand Prix of Sebring two-hour, 40-minute race airs Saturday, July 18, at 5:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

IMSA MICHELIN Pilot Challenge and Prototype Challenge series also resume their seasons at Sebring. The Pilot Challenge (Friday, July 17, 2:30 p.m. ET) and Prototype Challenge (Saturday, July 18, 11:50 a.m. ET) races air live on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.

IMSA Radio carries all on-track sessions, live, flag-to-flag and commercial free.

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