It’s not unusual for an IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship title to be decided at the season-ending Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. But for the 2023 edition taking place Oct. 11-14, the GTP class battle will be something extraordinary: The first six cars, representing all four GTP manufacturers, are still in the hunt for the inaugural title.
As if that isn’t tight enough, the first three cars in the standings are separated by a miniscule five points. Going into the finale, the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac holds a three-point lead over the No.10 Konica Minolta Acura, which sits one place and just two points above Porsche Penske Motorsport’s No. 6 entry.
The next three cars might have a slightly taller order to fill if they’re to emerge as the GTP class champions for 2023, but in a season like this one has been, nothing can be discounted… Breathing down the necks of the top-three contenders are the No. 25 BMW M Team RLL entry, the Porsche Penske Motorsport’s No. 7 machine and the No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agaganian Acura.
“All we can do when we head to Road Atlanta is do the best job that we can and see where we end up, because the one thing about the place is that crazy (stuff) always happens at the end of the race,” says Matt Campbell, driver of the No. 7 Porsche Penske Motorsport 963 with Felipe Nasr.
Filipe Albuquerque, co-driver of the second-placed No. 10 Acura with Ricky Taylor, sums it up even more succinctly, noting: “Like every year in IMSA, it’s all down to the final race, Motul Petit Le Mans.”
If that doesn’t present enough potential adrenalin-inducing excitement for you, consider that championships are also to be decided in the LMP2, LMP3 and GTP Pro classes during Motul Petit Le Mans, as well as a host of other hard-fought titles including the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup, which remains exceptionally tight across every WeatherTech Championship class.
The bounty of championship-settling battles continues throughout a stacked lineup of races during Motul Petit Le Mans weekend.
Championships are going down to the wire across virtually all of IMSA’s classes at Motul Petit Le Mans. IMSA Photo
The Fox Factory 120 race for the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge will decide title winners in both the GS and TCR classes. Meanwhile, the Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich offers double the fun with two races over the weekend to determine who will take the championship in that series. And new this year, the VP Racing SportsCar Challenge will crown its first overall winner from another tight contest.
There’s not much more you could ask for: championships at stake in every series, four days, and nights, of sports car sights and sounds, and the natural beauty of fall settling in across the picturesque landscape of Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. Don’t miss it.
Tickets are going fast for the 2023 Motul Petit Le Mans and Fox Factory 120. To get yours, visit roadatlanta.com.
While you’re there, check out what else the Motul Petit Le Mans weekend has to offer, including overnight camping, a revitalized fan zone and family-friendly kids’ zone, as well as well as a number of VIP Hospitality options.
Once you’re inside, enjoy the upgraded view of the start/finish line, front straight and pit lane thanks to a brand-new grandstand addition alongside the Michelin Tower.
Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta fans will also be able to take advantage of a new shuttle dispatch system with handicap access. Details are available on the website as well as in the fan guide and social media.