We’re only a few short weeks into 2023, but motorsports is already hitting the ground running. RACER’s ready for the green flag, too, and our first issue of the year brings you an in-depth preview of a new era for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, sets the scene on for the NASCAR Cup Series, and takes a deep dive into some of the pre-season storylines from Formula 1 and the NTT IndyCar Series.
In the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the future’s just arrived, and it sure looks exciting. The series’ headlining prototype class is going hybrid for 2023, ratcheting up the relevancy quotient, but framing it within a formula that still puts close competition and spectacle front and center.
In fact, so confident is IMSA in its potent blend of high-tech and high drama that it’s given this future-facing class a name from a golden age of North American sports car racing: GTP. Face it, you wouldn’t dare risk comparison with the legendary Grand Touring Prototype era if you didn’t think you had it right.
Acura, BMW, Cadillac and Porsche — with Lamborghini waiting in the wings — think IMSA has got it right, too. And on Jan. 28-29, the 61st running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will be the first chance for fans to watch this new breed of hybrid prototypes battling for GTP glory.
There’s plenty more to get excited about in the series’ other classes, too. GTD Pro heads into a second year of all-pro brawling, GTD is even bigger and better, and the Pro-Am prototypes of LMP2 and LMP3 are primed to put on a show.
Our in-depth guide covers all of the WeatherTech Championship storylines and introduces the all-new GTP contenders, so get up to speed and get ready for the new golden age of sports car racing.
But RACER No. 320’s just getting started. With the new NASCAR Cup Series just days away, we take a look at six drivers who should be in the thick of the title fight. Plus, we catch up with Logan Sargeant, who’s set to become the first American driver in F1 since 2015 when he lines up for the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 5.
Add in an intriguing look at what exactly F1’s high-profile team principals do, a fascinating interview with 2021 IndyCar champ Alex Palou, who’s putting last year’s contractual turmoil behind him as he guns for another title, and a look back on how the late Ken Block turned motorsports on its head with his incredible Gymkhana action videos, and that’s some serious reading right there. So sit back and enjoy the ride.
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