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Unfinished business in the IMSA opener at Daytona for new Mercedes AMG GT3

Unfinished business in the IMSA opener at Daytona for new Mercedes AMG GT3

22.01.2020: Will the new Mercedes-AMG GT3 enjoy the same level of success as last year? Team Riley Motorsport start the season opener of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship as defending champions in the endurance classification of the Michelin Endurance

Will the new Mercedes-AMG GT3 enjoy the same level of success as last year?




Team Riley Motorsport start the season opener of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship as defending champions in the endurance classification of the Michelin Endurance Cup.


Lawson Aschenbach (USA), Felipe Fraga (BRA), Ben Keating and Gar Robinson (both USA) will be contesting the Rolex 24 At Daytona, sharing the cockpit of the new Mercedes-AMG GT3 (start number 74) which is about to make its North American debut, having already made its first competitive outing of 2020 in the Dubai 24 Hours.



Riley Motorsports have finished the past three years leading the endurance classification, which is an amalgam of the results from the races at Daytona, Sebring, Watkins Glen and Road Atlanta. The 24-hour race at Daytona is the only one of the four in which the team suffered a big disappointment last year.



 Riley Motorsports had held the lead for a long time before torrential rain turned the running order upside down. The team ultimately finished seventh in the GTD classification.




The Daytona classic is the first of the twelve races making up the 2020 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship; it starts on Saturday 25th January at 13:35 local time (18:35 GMT).






Three weeks ago (3rd - 5th January), the Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing teams had the opportunity to prepare for the 24-hour race in Daytona at the Roar Before the Rolex, completing approximately 5,600 test kilometres on the Daytona International Speedway.



Team Winward Racing made a strong impression during the three-day tests: the pairing of Indy Dontje (NED) and Russell Ward (USA) in the number 4 Mercedes-AMG GT3 set the fastest time in three of the six test sessions and go into the opening race of the Michelin Pilot Challenge with excellent prospects.



The four-hour race for cars in the Grand Sport and TCR classes will be held as part of the supporting programme of the Rolex 24 At Daytona on Friday 24th January, one day before the 24-hour classic itself.



No fewer than seven GT4 cars built in Affalterbach will compete in the race, which marks the start of the Mercedes-AMG campaign to defend the title in the manufacturers’ championship of the Michelin Pilot Challenge.






- Jochen Übler, photos Mercedes

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/imsa-opener-24h-daytona-new-mercedes-amg-gt3---202931.html

22.01.2020 / MaP

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