Close Racing, Huge Audiences Make IMSA Road Race Showcase Weekend at Road America Huge Success
Friday, August 9, 2019

The results are in from last weekend’s IMSA Road Race Showcase at Road America and it’s clear – the weekend was a tremendous success on and off the racetrack.

“Across the board, our weekend at Road America was outstanding,” said IMSA President Scott Atherton. “Our performance last weekend showcased our sport perfectly, from ultra-competitive racing on track to record attendance and strong television viewership. Add to that the news we were able to confirm at our annual ‘State of the Sport’ presentation – including the unprecedented announcement of all seven of our series’ schedules for 2020 – and it made the entire weekend a home run.”

The on-track competition was close and compelling throughout, with a scant, 0.227-second margin of victory for the No. 55 Mazda Team Joest RT-24P Daytona Prototype international (DPi) shared by Jonathan Bomarito and Harry Tincknell over the No. 6 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 DPi of Juan Pablo Montoya and Dane Cameron in Sunday’s two-hour, 40-minute IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship headliner.

Saturday’s featured race, the Road America 120 for the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge, was perhaps even more thrilling. Despite a weather delay that trimmed the race to 75 minutes from its scheduled two-hour race length, the final lap saw two lead changes and the winning No. 71 Rebel Rock Racing Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R driven by Robin Liddell go from fourth place at the start of the final lap to the victory for Liddell and co-driver Frank DePew by an eyelash – 0.070 seconds – over the No. 75 Compass Racing McLaren GT4 of Kuno Wittmer and Paul Holton.

It was outstanding entertainment for the fans at the racetrack, and there were plenty of them throughout the weekend. Road America officials reported record IMSA crowds all three days, as evidenced by packed campgrounds and thousands of race fans throughout the facility.

The at-track attendance was matched by a fantastic NBCSN television audience that was more than 350 percent larger than the television audience for last year’s race at Road America. It was the most-watched WeatherTech Championship race of the season to date and had the largest audience since the 2016 race at Lime Rock Park, which aired on the FOX network.

The race has continued an upward trend for WeatherTech Championship average viewership throughout 2019. To date, average viewership is up 15 percent over 2018. That number is expected to increase by season’s end with NBC network television coverage planned for WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on Sept. 15 and the first three hours of the season-ending Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta on Oct. 12.

Next up for the WeatherTech Championship is the Michelin GT Challenge at VIRginia International Raceway on Aug. 25. The race will include just the GT Le Mans (GTLM) and GT Daytona (GTD) classes. The next race for DPi and LMP2 will be the penultimate round of the season at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on Sept. 15.

NBCSN will have live television coverage of the Michelin GT Challenge beginning at 1:30 p.m. ET with live streaming available on the NBC Sports App and NBCSports.com. IMSA Radio also will offer live coverage throughout the weekend on IMSA.com and RadioLeMans.com, as well as race coverage on SiriusXM Radio.

Tickets are available at VIRnow.com.

Partners