Mazda Prototype programs is being shutdown

Mazda will shutter its manufacturing unit IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship DPi program. We understands the Japanese model, which reached its highest achievement within the collection final November with an total win on the 12 Hours of Sebring, will bid farewell to racing its Mazda RT24-P DPi after October’s 10-hour Petit Le Mans occasion. This system, run by chassis provider Multimatic, is not going to return when IMSA’s new LMDh components arrives in 2023.

Together with the upcoming withdrawal DPi, Mazda Motorsports boss Nelson Cosgrove, who joined the model from Toyota Racing Improvement in 2019, is leaving the position on the finish of the month. He shall be changed by veteran racing government and program supervisor Mo Murray, who has been connected to Mazda’s DPi effort, amongst different initiatives, for a few years.

“Mazda has an extended historical past in racing and not too long ago added a number of DPi victories and podium finishes in the course of the 2020 season. It is a tribute to our ‘by no means cease difficult’ spirit,” chairman and CEO of Mazda North American Operations Masahiro Moro stated.

“We’re particularly pleased with our victory on the 12 Hours of Sebring, podium finishes at Daytona’s Rolex 24 in each 2020 and 2021, and record-setting laps at Daytona in 2019 and 2020. These are vital accomplishments within the historical past of Mazda Motorsports. We thank our drivers, crew, companions, and our followers for his or her years of help, and stay up for a robust 2021 season.”

After solidifying its race-winning presence in IMSA with production-based RX-2, RX-3, and RX-7 fashions, Mazda embarked upon its first prototype journey in 1984 with Jim Downing within the GTP Lights class, the place the twin-rotor 13B motor dominated endurance racing. A transfer to the highest class in 1992 with the RX-792P GTP program yielded wonderful sights and sounds for IMSA followers, however little in the best way of success because the venture folded on the finish of the 12 months.

Mazda prevailed on the daybreak of IMSA’s new open-top World Sports activities Automotive components in 1994 with Wayne Taylor, who captured the title in Downing’s newest Kudzu chassis, and whereas a lot of Mazda-powered prototypes appeared by means of the tip of the last decade, the entries have been usually campaigned by privateers or with restricted manufacturing unit engagement.

Mazda made its official return to North American prototype racing in 2005 with an LMP2 effort within the American Le Mans Sequence. The early program advanced from a rotary-powered Braveness chassis fielded by B-Ok Motorsports to a longstanding relationship with Superior Engine Analysis that produced highly effective four-cylinder turbos utilized by B-Ok, Dyson Racing, and SpeedSource Race Engineering.

The model’s most up-to-date Prototype championship was delivered by the Dyson crew in 2011, the place its Lola-Mazda effort secured the ALMS LMP1 title. Extra race wins adopted in 2012 and 2013 earlier than SpeedSource took the model into the reformed IMSA collection with a diesel-powered entry in 2014.

Mazda most not too long ago discovered Prototype championship success in 2011, when Dyson Racing received the ALMS LMP1 title. Gibson/Motorsport Photos

Two years of perseverance with the four-cylinder turbodiesels was met with a return to AER’s gasoline-fueled motors in 2016, which resulted in a direct uptick in competitiveness. And with the brand new DPi laws introduced for 2017, Mazda contracted Multimatic to provide the gorgeous RT24-P, which was initially run by SpeedSource earlier than this system was handed to Joest Racing in 2018. Hitting its stride in 2019 with the inclusion of Multimatic’s engineering providers, the RT24-Ps received three consecutive races, and added two extra in 2020 because the No. 55 entry completed third within the DPi championship.

Going through funds cuts, the two-car RT24-P program was halved for 2021, with Multimatic’s Harry Tincknell, and Mazda’s Oliver Jarvis and Jonathan Bomarito retained to drive the No. 55 for the 12 months. The trio certified second and completed third in January’s in what would show to be the manufacturing unit’s final look on the Rolex 24 At Daytona.

Mazda’s choice to halt its prototype racing actions has been taken in isolation from its different involvements within the sport, with its grassroots and Idemitsu MX-5 Cup collection left unaffected by the assorted DPi modifications.

“Mazda is without doubt one of the winningest producers in IMSA historical past, with greater than 200 victories on the highest degree of IMSA competitors and the potential so as to add to that complete by means of the steadiness of the 2021 WeatherTech Championship season,” famous IMSA President John Doonan, who previous to taking the helm of the IMSA group in 2019 was was the architect of the Mazda program from 2005 on. “Mazda was the primary to disclose its DPi race automotive, the RT24-P, which went on to win iconic occasions just like the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Offered by Advance Auto Components and the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen amongst different races, and alongside the best way grew to become a fan favourite. Whereas we are going to miss seeing that stunning prototype out on the racetrack, we stay up for our continued partnership because the sanctioning physique for the Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup introduced by BFGoodrich Tires and the joy that collection will proceed to supply for IMSA followers.”