With the LMP2 class of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship seeing increased interest and entries from European teams, one of the classes’ most loyal American entries — PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports — has announced its intention to run two full-season cars next season.
The team’s first entry, which sports the team’s usual No. 52, will be a dual program split between some drivers racing for the Michelin Endurance Cup and others competing in the sprint races. The trio who won the Michelin Endurance Cup last season — Ben Keating, Mikkel Jensen and Scott Huffaker — will be back to defend that title. Nicolas Lapierre will join the No. 52 for the Rolex 24.
Two other drivers will take over the No. 52 for the sprint races but those drivers were not revealed.
Steven Thomas and Jonathon Bomarito will partner in the new No. 11 entry for a full season. Thomas, who is the co-founder of WIN Autosport, will bring WIN’s No. 11 into the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports stable. Fifteen-year-old Josh Pierson will complete the team’s line-up for the four Michelin Endurance Cup rounds. Pierson formally drove in USF2000, and was signed on to United Autosports’ World Endurance Championship roster earlier this year. Harry Tincknell will complete the team’s Rolex 24 at Daytona line-up. Both cars will be ORECA 07s.
“It’s been a long time coming for our small and tight-knit team to become a two-car program,” team principal and owner Bobby Oergel said. “The last couple of seasons have been great with multiple championships and great programs within them. The opportunity to now grow and add the No. 11 car into our program is very unique and exciting for us in these trying times around the world.”
The announcement means that Keating will again be pulling double-duty in the Rolex 24 At Daytona. He’ll be splitting his weekend between the No. 52 ORECA and the No. 5 JDC-Miller Cadillac DPi entry. This will be the third year in a row that Keating will be in two cars for the race, and the sixth time overall.
“What do you do after you win a championship? You do it again,” Keating said. “I am so excited about this team going into 2022. We had such a great ‘mojo’ as we worked through the season, and we should only be better going into 2022. Now, we all have experience in this car on these tracks. We should be able to hit the ground running.”