Sebring’s 12-hour classic set for a 49-car show this year

Photo: Courtesy of IMSA

There’s a handful of changes compared to the Rolex 24 at Daytona for the second round of both the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring fueled by Fresh from Florida.

A 49-car grid was released on Wednesday, broken down 12 in Prototype, 7 in Prototype Challenge, 10 in GT Le Mans and 20 in GT Daytona. There’s some driver changes as well.

It’s down slightly from the 54 cars at Daytona, but up six cars from the 43 that started last year.

The P change goes from 13 to 12 cars; add the new DragonSpeed Oreca 05 Nissan and the Alegra Motorsports Riley BMW DP in addition to confirmed partial season entries from Tequila Patron ESM and Highway to Help, along with the eight full-season cars. The two Chip Ganassi Racing Riley-Fords and SMP Racing BR Engineering BR01 Nissan drop off.

PC drops by only one from eight cars to seven, as BAR1 Motorsports runs only one car instead of two.

GTLM drops by one with the SMP Racing Ferrari 488 GTE not in attendance.

GTD sees the biggest change with a drop by two cars to 22. Drop offs from Daytona at the moment include the second Riley Viper, the TRG-AMR Aston Martin and the Frikadelli Porsche.

Dream Racing makes its debut with another Lamborghini Huracán GT3 and after a reportedly weird sequence of events led to O’Gara Motorsport’s team withdrawal, the Townsend Bell/Bill Sweedler combination resurfaces in a second Lamborghini at Robby Benton’s Change Racing.

Despite not being listed on the preliminary entry list, Patrick Long will continue in the No. 540 Black Swan Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R along with Tim Pappas, Nick Catsburg and Andy Pilgrim for Sebring.

The race runs next week, March 19.