IMSA will adhere to its existing GT3-based regulations for the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s Pro-Am GT Daytona class when it unveils the new GTD Pro category in 2022.
Despite considering making changes to the well-defined GT3 rule set to accommodate its upcoming pro-themed replacement for GT Le Mans by allowing custom tires, more power, less weight, and other performance-related differentiators, IMSA has chosen to stick with the same technical regulations for GTD and GTD Pro.
“It was important that we worked in lockstep with our manufacturers and tire partner to develop the GTD Pro ruleset,” said IMSA President John Doonan. “Our IMSA technical team was thorough in its analysis and the end result allows us to chart a successful course for the future of factory-supported GT racing in GTD Pro as opposed to the customer racing nature of the GTD class.
IMSA also outlined the technical commonalities and the sporting differences between the two categories.
GTD Pro/GTD technical platform and tires
• Common FIA-GT3 specification for both classes and common fuel from VP Racing Fuels, IMSA’s official fuel partner.
• Both classes will use the single-specification Michelin S9M tire currently used this year in the GTD class for the 2022 season. This along with the use of the shared FIA-GT3 platform will reduce development costs for both manufacturers and customer teams. IMSA and Michelin will announce a longer-term solution for 2023 and beyond at a later date.
GTD Pro/GTD Balance of Performance (BoP)
• GTD Pro and GTD will use the same, data-driven Balance of Performance process, which is an extension of IMSA’s current process.
• As GTD Pro is geared toward factory-supported teams and drivers, on-track performance levels achieved by the GTD Pro class is expected to exceed that of the GTD class. For this reason, the BoP for each class will be managed independently.
• GTD Pro will adopt current GTLM Sporting Regulations on driver ratings, qualifying, grid placement and race procedures. GTD Pro cars will use red number panels and position-indicator LEDs. GTD Pro cars will be required to start the race on qualifying tires or face a penalty as opposed to GTLM, which allowed teams to use any tires from their allocation without penalty.
• GTD will remain as it is today with the same requirements for Bronze- or Silver-rated drivers to be included in team line-ups, qualifying, grid placement and race procedures. The same qualifying procedures introduced in 2021 which require a Bronze- or Silver-rated driver to set the team’s starting position followed by a mandatory driver change and a second qualifying session to earn qualifying points will remain in effect.
• GTD Pro will adopt the same testing limitations as the existing GTLM class, which allows for eight days of testing. The GTD class will continue to be capped at four days, although Bronze drivers may have unrestricted test days with IMSA approval. Wind tunnel and straight-line testing is prohibited in GTD.