POUGHKEEPSIE, NY September 5, 2012 – It was announced today at Daytona Beach, FL, that GRAND-AM Road Racing and the American Le Mans Series will merge under common ownership, uniting professional sports car racing in North America under a single platform. There will be a blending of each series’ personnel, technical rules, officiating, communications, marketing, scheduling and broadcasting. GRAND-AM and the ALMS will continue to operate with separate schedules in 2013, with a combined schedule in 2014. The 2014 schedule of tracks will be based on market importance, historical significance and popularity among competitors and fans.
There will be a merging of leadership with the newly constituted Board of Directors responsible for strengthening the areas of race operations, competition, communication, marketing and sales, as they oversee both series in 2013.
The class structure from 2014 on will be determined with the input of the competitive stakeholders and will be aligned with the needs of the teams, manufactures, television and sponsors.
Talks are being held to maintain a link with the ACO and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The goal would be to retain a strong and cooperative relationship, including a close association to GT rules and involvement of the Series’ teams at Le Mans.
Rob Dyson, Team Principal:
“The history of sports car racing in America has centered around sophisticated performance and innovation. Dyson Racing has raced top-line prototypes for three decades and the variety of technology and competitors during that period has defined the sport and produced the memories that sustain its growth today and propel its future. We anticipate that this historic merger will produce sports car racing that embraces the diversity that has made our racing a fan favorite, with world-wide legitimacy. There are currently twelve auto and engine manufactures plus four tire manufactures in our series. We expect the newly combined series will produce an even more enhanced arena of value for manufacturers and privateers alike.”
Chris Dyson, Vice President and Sporting Director:
“The best mergers strengthen. This combination has the potential to be a significant milepost in the history of sports car racing and to foster a period reminiscent of our sport’s glory days. The addition of GRAND-AM’s historic tracks to IMSA’s existing set of iconic tracks will only reinforce the appeal to fans, competitors and manufacturers. We are optimistic that with a continued emphasis on technical advancement, variety, high levels of on-track performance, close competition and a welcoming paddock atmosphere, unified sports car racing in North America is about to enter a new era – one of long term strength. There are always challenges involved with change, but Dyson Racing will continue to work with all in our sport to ensure the strongest possible future.”