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WEC: Sebring season-opener entries revealed

  • gb

The entry list for the 2023 FIA World Endurance Championship season-opener, the 1000 Miles of Sebring, taking place on 17 March at the iconic Sebring International Raceway in Florida, USA, has been revealed, across the three classes featuring a total of 37 cars and 10 local drivers

11-car-strong Hypercar class entry is headlined by reigning teams’ and drivers’ champions Toyota Gazoo Racing. The Cologne-based outfit carried an unchanged driver line-up into 2023, but the manufacturer that got used to dominating its category over the last couple of years is set to face stiff competition from six other automotive brands, including the likes of Porsche and Ferrari who transfer their factory racing efforts from LMGTE Pro to Hypercar.

But at Sebring all eyes will be on the US-flagged entries, Cadillac and Glickenhaus. Furthermore, Peugeot TotalEnergies will have local racer Gustavo Menezes among its line-up of drivers sharing the two Peugeot 9X8 Hybrid Hypercars, while fellow Californian, Dane Cameron, will be sporting the colours of Porsche Penske Motorsport.

Floyd Vanwall Racing Team will be in Sebring with Jacques Villeneuve, Formula 1 World Champion and Indy Car star who enjoys great popularity in North America, among its drivers.

There will be 12 entries in LMP2 at Sebring headlined by last year’s title-winning squad, Hertz Team JOTA which will start its campaign with an Oreca 07 Gibson, but won’t defend the crown, switching to Porsche LMH machinery later in season.

Robert Kubica returns to Team WRT, the Belgian squad that he won the 2021 European Le Mans Series title with, for his second WEC campaign, having raced with Prema Orlen Team last year. Team WRT will once again run a two-car entry and Kubica once again will team up with Louis Deletraz.

Replacing Kubica at Prema is former Formula 1 racer Daniil Kyvat, entered alongside French LMGT Am graduate, Doriane Pin.

Alpine Elf Team steps down from Hypercar to the LMP2 class, but expands from one to two cars for 2023, in what will be an interim season for the French manufacturer that is eyeing to debut its new Hypercar in 2024.

British squad United Autosports will field two of the championship’s youngest drivers with 17-year-old Josh Pierson and WEC debutant, 18-year-old Frederick Lubin. They will be joined by experienced and decorated endurance races Filipe Albuquerque, Tom Blomqvist, Oliver Jarvis and Phil Hanson.

The LMGTE Am class, where pro and am drivers share road car-based supercars, enjoys the strongest entry of all the three classes, with 14 cars from four different manufacturers set to battle it out at Sebring.

Home fans will be cheering for Corvette Racing and American driver Ben Keating. Keating will be joined in the Chevrolet Corvette C8.R by Nicolas Varonne and Nicky Catsburg.

A further six American drivers will race in the class including Simon Mann, Michael Dinan, PJ Hyett and Gunnar Jeannette, Scott Huffaker and Ryan Hardwick.

A total of four females will compete in the GTE Am category as No. 85 Iron Dames entry returns with Sarah Bovy, Michelle Gatting and Rahel Frey as well as Lilou Wadoux who will drive the No. 83 Richard Mille AF Corse Ferrari.