The new Era Motorsport LMP2 team has set its debut lineup for the Rolex 24 At Daytona.
Led by driver/team owner Kyle Tilley, Era Motorsport will send the Gibson V8-powered No. 18 ORECA 07 chassis into action with Ryan Lewis, Dwight Merriman, and Nicolas Minassian (pictured).
The team also confirmed it has cancelled its plans to utilize operational support from Elton Julian’s DragonSpeed LMP2 team, opting to race directly against the defending Rolex 24 At Daytona LMP2 class winners throughout the season.
“Era Motorsport has come a long way in a year,” Tilley proclaimed. “To say I’m excited is an understatement. For myself, to be back in a top-level prototype is fantastic, but to do it as a team owner is unbelievable. A mountain of work has gone in to get us to this point, and we couldn’t have done it without the crew and especially our recently-appointed team manager, Ross Needham.”
Tilly brings Merriman to compete in his first IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship event in the LMP2 category.
“Advancing to the IMSA WeatherTech LMP2 class will be a big step,” he said. “Kyle has been a great coach and team owner, and with his and the team’s continued coaching and support, I know we’ll be up for the task.”
In Lewis and Minassian, Era has two vastly established pros to lead from the cockpit.
“I am very excited to be joining Era Motorsport for the 2020 Rolex 24 at Daytona,” said Minassian, the former Peugeot LMP1 factory driver. “It’s such a great race with a rich history, and one of the top endurance events in the world. I have a lot of respect for the way the team works and how this wonderful adventure is developing. Racing the ORECA chassis is also a joy, and I know that car and it is a great choice by the team. Kyle and Era have put a lot of effort into this program and I am very happy to be part of it.”
The quartet will turn their first laps together at the January 3-5 Roar Before The 24 test at Daytona.
“I couldn’t be happier to be coming back to race in the IMSA WeatherTech series next season,” Lewis added. “I have to thank Kyle, and Dwight for bringing me onboard. The Roar can’t come soon enough.”