The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and WeatherTech jointly announced today that the leader in automotive accessories and one of the industry’s most strategic marketers of its products will become the new entitlement partner of IMSA’s premier sports car series. As part of a multiyear agreement with IMSA, the series will be called the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship effective November 1, 2015. The announcement was made today to industry stakeholders as part of an IMSA “State of the Series” presentation in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. WeatherTech – based in Bolingbrook, Illinois – is best known for its DigitalFit FloorLiners and commitment to all-American manufacturing.
The company is owned by Founder and CEO David MacNeil, who has a longstanding passion for sports car racing and has raced professionally. His son, Cooper MacNeil, currently races in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship GT Daytona (GTD) class, co-driving the No. 22 WeatherTech Porsche 911 GT America with Leh Keen for Alex Job Racing.
“I have been involved in racing for over 30 years,” MacNeil said. “I’ve competed in IMSA with Alex Job, finishing on the Sebring podium in 1999. My son Cooper has been driving in the American Le Mans Series and TUDOR Championship for the past six years. We are thrilled to be a part of the next evolution of sports car racing with the influx of new FIA GT3 cars next season and the new prototypes coming in 2017. This is an exciting time for sports car racing in America and I hope to help broaden the appeal of this compelling sport.”
More than 100 print publications feature WeatherTech advertising each month alongside regular national television and radio advertisements. WeatherTech advertisements reinforcing the company’s “Made In America” message earned positive reviews during NFL Super Bowl telecasts in 2014 and 2015.
“WeatherTech is the perfect choice to serve as our new entitlement partner as we further expand the marketing activation and exposure of what now will be known as the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship,” said IMSA CEO Ed Bennett. “David MacNeil’s enthusiasm and personal passion for our sport, along with his proven success at growing the WeatherTech brand through brilliant, high-quality manufacturing and aggressive product marketing, will pay dividends for all involved. This new partnership coupled with the introduction of many new global race car specifications to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship over the next two seasons gives us an extremely bright future in support of our overall IMSA plans.”
The first race for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will be the 54th Rolex 24 At Daytona on January 30-31, 2016. The race also will be the first event to take place in the new Daytona International Speedway motorsports stadium after the completion of the DAYTONA Rising project – a $400 million renovation that will confirm Daytona International Speedway as the most advanced and fan-friendly motorsports venue in the world.
With the relaunch of the TUDOR brand in the United States behind them, the company no longer will serve as an entitlement sponsor but instead will transition to being the “Official Timepiece of IMSA” for the next 10 years, beginning in 2016.