JDC-Miller Motorsports expands IMSA program for 2017 with LMP2 car

© JDC-Miller Motorsports
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JDC-Miller Motorsports has announced that it will expand its racing program in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for 2017 by entering the Prototype class with an ORECA 07 LMP2 car.

JDC-Miller Motorsports currently races in the Prototype Challenge class of the American endurance series, as well as fielding entries in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Series and the IMSA Mazda Prototype Lites Series.

Here is the release in full from JDC-Miller Motorsports.

Current Prototype Challenge entrant JDC-Miller MotorSports announced it will add a Prototype class program in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in 2017 with an ORECA 07 LMP2 car, as part of its current IMSA programs.

Team co-owner John Church confirmed today that the Minneapolis-based squad will be on the grid with a 2017-spec ORECA 07 Gibson-powered LMP2 car in 2017.

JDC-Miller MotorSports currently fields the # 85 PC entry in the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship along with the #54 ST car in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Series. JDC MotorSports also operates a very successful multi-car entry in the IMSA Mazda Prototype Lites Series. The team won the season opening Rolex24 Hours of Daytona and the Long Beach Grand Prix in the PC class, and currently sits 3rd in the driver’s championship.

JDC-Miller will continue to run its current Prototype Challenge car in 2017 with the driver lineups for both programs to be finalized in the coming weeks. Current JDC-Miller MotorSports regulars Misha Goikhberg, Stephen Simpson and Chris Miller will remain with the team, but firm commitments to either program have not been confirmed.

“All of our current drivers will be part of the new LMP2 program in some form in 2017 and beyond. Additionally, we obviously have great talents in our Mazda Prototype Lites program with Austin Versteeg and Clark Toppe who we would love to move into our recently announced P3 (PC1 class) program for 2017.” Church explained. “We have also had several conversations with a number of other potential drivers for the 2017 LMP2 program.”

With the confirmation for the LMP2 Prototype class program in 2017 and the recent announcement to field LMP3 spec Prototypes in the newly branded 2017 IMSA Prototype Challenge championship, JDC MotorSports and JDC Miller MotorSports will run programs in all IMSA Prototype classes in 2017.

“This is a very exciting program for 2017 and we felt this was the right time to move into the P2 class. We are confident in Oreca and feel they share our vision and goals. We have had a very strong relationship with them over the past 3 years.” Church explained. “Clearly our long-term goal is to become part of a DPi manufacturer program in the future”, Church explained.

“We are delighted by the commitment of JDC-Miller MotorSports with the new ORECA 07 LM P2. We have a strong link with the team since several years and it is great to continue our cooperation with this new challenge. The team is involved in all the different classes of the endurance racing ladder, so it is a logical but important step. We will bring our experience to support JDC-Miller MotorSports and help them to fight at the front. It is an excising multiple-years project and we are glad to be part of it. We can’t wait to see the new ORECA 07 at Daytona.” ORECA Group president Hugues de Chaunac added.

JDC-Miller MotorSports is the first American team to announce its plan to run the new ORECA 07 in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. The target is to make the first U.S. test during the Daytona series test in December before continuing with private testing leading up to the Roar Daytona test in January.

X44 Racing win 2022 Extreme E championship as Abt Cupra score first race victory

2022 Extreme E Uruguay
Extreme E
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Abt Cupra Racing’s Nasser Al-Attiyah and Klara Andersson scored their first win in the Extreme E Energy X Prix in the 2022 finale in Uruguay as Lewis Hamilton’s X44 Vida Carbon Racing drivers Sebastien Loeb and Cristina Gutierrez survived a chaotic finale to edge the 2021 champion Rosberg X Prix team of Johan Kristoffersson and Mikhaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky, by two points.

“There are so many emotions,” Andersson said in Extreme E’s coverage. “I’ve been waiting for this for so long. In my second race, first full weekend to be at the top of the podium: it’s big.”

Andersson was behind the wheel at the finish.

Rosberg Racing entered the event with a 17-point advantage over X44, but the standings were close enough that four teams remained in contention in Round 5.

“It’s a crucial weekend for us,” Loeb said in Extreme E’s coverage prior to the race. “We are not in the best position to win the championship, but the only thing we can do is try to win the race and score as many points as possible.”

The top two title contenders each crashed in qualification and were relegated to the Crazy Race, Extreme E’s version of the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ). For the moment, they had the steepest hill to climb, but then the other two championship contending teams, Chip Ganassi Racing and Acciona Sainz Racing failed to advance from their heats.

Only one team advances from the Crazy Race, so the X44 drivers were in a must-win situation to simply keep hope alive.

More: Extreme E 2023 schedule

Ahlin-Kottulinsky and Gutierrez ran wheel to wheel into the first turn at the start of the LCQ.

The Rosberg racer experienced crash damage in that turn that damaged her front steering, but managed to limp back to the pits at the end of her two-lap stint. The team attempted to fix the steering, but incurred a penalty for having too many mechanics in the pit area.

Meanwhile, Gutierrez took the early lead, but knew she would need to sit through a five-second penalty for an incident earlier in the weekend. The female half of the gender equal pair erased the penalty by entering the Switch Zone with a five-second lead before turning the car over to Loeb.

That was all the nine-time World Rally Championship titlist needed to give him the advantage needed to win the Crazy Race.

But the championship was not over yet. X44 Racing needed to finish third or better in the five-car finale to earn enough points for the title and after advancing from the LCQ, they were forced to take the worst grid position.

A chaotic start to the Finale saw Loeb run as high the lead and low as fourth after getting pushed off course during his first lap. And that is how he entered to Switch Zone.

On her first lap, Gutierrez slammed into Molly Taylor. With one lap remaining, X44 and Gutierrez were still in fourth and the title hope was quickly evaporating, but it was announced halfway through the lap that the third-running Andretti United team would suffer a penalty for a Switch Zone infraction. The seven-second deduction for Timmy Hansen braking too late in the zone made the difference in the title.

Coming off a disappointing Copper X Prix when Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour crossed under the checkers first, but were relegated to fifth by penalty, the McLaren pair scored their first podium of the season in second.