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Unread 08-07-2017, 10:08 AM #1
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MINI to enter IMSA's new (for 2018) TCR class
MINI to enter IMSA's new (for 2018) TCR class

LAP Motorsports Spearheading MINI TCR Project (sportscar365.com)
Quote:
Ryan Myrehn | August 7, 2017

MINI is moving forward with plans to join the growing list of manufacturers building cars for TCR competition, partnering with IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge entrant LAP Motorsports to develop the car ahead of a planned 2018 debut.

LAP has a strong history of success with MINI in the Continental Tire Challenge under the MINI JCW Team moniker since entering the series in 2014.

With the support of MINI USA, the Brownsburg, Ind.-based team began the process of designing a TCR car in January and has already developed the brake system and gearbox, the latter of which will be provided by Xtrac.

According to team principal Luis Perocarpi, the lingering question that needs answering before the project can move to the next step is deciding which model MINI would like to see representing its brand on track.

“We obviously had an interest in TCR because we were looking at the future for MINI and us,” Perocarpi told Sportscar365. “We literally started the TCR project in January of this year.

“We didn’t know much at the time because there wasn’t a partnership between IMSA and TCR until the last couple of months, so we weren’t getting a lot of answers, but we started the project anyway.

“We’ve submitted all of our paperwork to TCR, we have all of the approvals from MINI USA.”

Perocarpi said they’ve yet to finalize whether the car will be based on MINI’s Hardtop 4-Door or the Clubman.

“We started the project thinking we’d run the hard-top four-door, but that’s a bit of a challenge because the car is shorter than what the regs require, although we do understand that there are several cars in TCR that haven’t met that requirement.

“MINI still has other cars like the Clubman that fits right into the regs… At the end of the day, what does MINI want to do?

“[TCR cars] are built to regs so every car will be competitive so we’re not worried about which car we build.”

The arrangement figures to be a boon for the LAP outfit, which would find itself slotted in as the exclusive constructor of all MINI TCR race cars internationally.

“The way TCR regs work, there’s one car builder per brand,” Perocarpi said. “That car builder has to have manufacturer support. Anyone who wants to buy a MINI, they would end up having to buy it from us.

“If you want to buy a Honda, you have to buy it from JAS in Europe. Even HPD has to do that. If you want an Audi, you have to go to Audi Sport. That’s how it goes.”

Perocarpi said that while the project is backed by MINI USA, he expects international teams to take interest in the platform given the success of manufacturers like Audi and Honda have had finding customers for their TCR offerings.
Full article: http://sportscar365.com/imsa/ctscc/l...i-tcr-project/
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Unread 08-07-2017, 11:10 AM #2
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MINI to enter IMSA's new (for 2018) TCR class
Not sure how I feel about this.........spec-type racing is not what I want to see. It's why I hate DTM, same cars with different paint a-la NASCRAP.
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Unread 08-07-2017, 12:06 PM #3
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MINI to enter IMSA's new (for 2018) TCR class
I see where you're going re silhouette cars, etc, and I agree, but I don't think this is a silhouette series.

The TCR class doesn't mandate a spec chassis to which manufacturers/teams then shape a model-mimicking body shell. It looks to me like just another class for IMSA, slotting between GS and ST, and the commonality they're talking about is that if a team wants to run in any series with a TCR class they buy their TCR-built Audi, Ford, Honda, Alfa Romeo, Kia, Subaru, Volkswagen or MINI from the manufacturer (or a manufacturer-designated builder) and it's the same car (more or less) regardless of series or country they choose to run it in.

Rather than a spec series, each manufacturer has a single spec TCR model that then fits any/all TCR series'.

At least, I think that's how it works. If so, it means a team can run in any series with a TCR class without making many (if any) alterations to their cars.

If anyone understands this better than I've explained it, please jump in and educate the rest of us.

I'm not a fan of Wikipedia as a reference but just this once...here's their summary of the technical regs:
Quote:
Eligible cars: 4/5-door vehicles
Body shell: Reinforced production body shell; wheel arch modifications allowed to accommodate tyres
Minimum weight: 1250 kg for cars with production gearbox, 1285 kg for cars with racing gearbox (both including the driver)
Minimum overall length: 4.20 metres
Maximum overall width: 1.95 metres
Engine: Turbo-charged petrol or diesel up to 2.0-litre
Torque: 420 Nm
Power: 350 PS
Lubrication: Wet sump
Exhaust: Homologated catalytic converter using production parts
Traction: On two wheels
Gearbox: Production or TCR International Series sequential; production paddle shift accepted
Front Suspension: Production lay-out; parts free design
Rear Suspension: Original design of production car with reinforced components
Brakes:
Front: max 6 piston calipers, brake discs max diameter 380mm
Rear: max 2 piston callipers; production ABS accepted
Wheels: Maximum dimensions of rim: 10″ x 18″
Aerodynamics:
Front splitter: 2014 SEAT León Eurocup
Rear wing: FIA Appendix J Art. 263 2014
Ground clearance: Minimum 80 mm
Power/Weight Ratio: Subject to the Balance of Performance (changing between +70 and -20 kg from the minimum car weight)
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Unread 08-08-2017, 11:37 AM #4
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MINI to enter IMSA's new (for 2018) TCR class
That's kinda what I was alluding to. Don't care for the look of the Audi TCR running in PWC, so would hate to see even more of the "boy racer" type of cars.
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