After making an award-winning debut this year with a pair of exploratory outings in IMSA Prototype Challenge competition, Jr III Racing is looking forward to making a full season campaign in the all-LMP3 IMSA prototype class in 2020.
Having established a strong foundation supporting several client campaigns with its vintage racing program, Jr III Racing has made the commitment to expand into the the professional ranks by launching an IMSA Prototype Challenge program in 2019. Jr III Racing bought two brand-new Ligier JS P3 LMP3 machines to be campaigned out of the team’s 10,000-square foot base in Mooresville, North Carolina.
Jr III Racing made its IMSA debut at Virginia International Raceway (VIR) in August, taking one Ligier LMP3 directly into competition still carrying its bare carbon fiber livery. But despite the all-new equipment, there was an experienced squad behind the effort.
Working with accomplished engineer Rick Cameron, Kris Wilson was tapped to man the controls for the one hour, forty-five minute race. It was Wilson’s first run with the Michelin-shod LMP3 platform, and the veteran delivered the performance and feedback that the team was looking for as the Colorado resident qualified 12th and came home a lead lap ninth to claim the Bronze Cup.
"We launched everything at VIR with Kris (Wilson), and it was really productive for us," said Glavin. "We were lucky to have a guy like Kris join us. He’s a steady hand and knows pretty much everyone, so that helped us get started because we knew we could focus on picking up as much as we could to prepare for next season. It was cool that he got the Bronze Cup both times so we came out of those first two weekends with a lot of notes, and a little hardware to go with them."
The move to grow a successful program of preparing and supporting a range of vintage-racing oriented machines to integrate a professional racing option on the IMSA LMP3 platform for Jr III clients was one that followed extensive research.
"I did a lot of homework to decide where to grow our team to race on the professional level, and IMSA Prototype Challenge made the most sense from a competition point of view," said Glavin. "The cars are really high quality and straightforward to work on, it is a great rules package with the Pro-Am structure, and being in this (IMSA) paddock is something that can present opportunities down the road for the team if we are successful."
The Jr III team is one that has a deep bench of experience, one that matches the range of cars that the organization supports in competition.
"We are a little bit different because all of the guys we have at the track are the same guys who work for us full time at the shop," said Glavin. "Being here in the Charlotte area, it is ideal for us as a team just because there are so many resources just in a 20 mile radius. And there is a lot of talent here as well and thats been a big boost as we’ve grown. Once we started down the path of building this program, IMSA was really helpful and welcoming. We are the new guys here and it’s good to have people that are eager to help you find your way a bit during the weekends."
Jr III Racing is working to finalize plans for the 2020 IMSA season, which will launch with the opening round of Prototype Challenge competition at Daytona International Speedway on January 5th, 2020.
Drivers who are interested may contact the team at:
Willy Glavin: 617- 413- 0961