Motorsports: Why the Grand-Am and ALMS Merger Is Great for Sports Car Racing
It was announced that the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and the American Le Mans Series will merge into one series in 2014.
This is a great move by both series.
Both organizations have great racing that is only going to get better with the merger. Grand-Am has the Rolex 24 at Daytona while ALMS has 12 Hours of Sebring.
What is going to benefit ALMS are the resources that Grand-Am has from being a part of NASCAR. The Rolex 24 at Daytona is growing in popularity and one reason is how NASCAR drivers come to race for the Grand-Am teams.
Details about the name of the series, rules, or even schedule are still being worked on, but the fact that the process is moving forward is huge for American sports car racing. There at least doesn't seem to be any bitterness or fighting like when IRL and ChampCar merged.
While major questions come up about sponsors and affiliations with different organizations, both series are doing the right thing by waiting until 2014 to merge so that decisions won't be rushed.
It will be interesting to see how both organizations work to deal with sponsors and commitments. It will be a real test over the next year for Grand-Am and ALMS to make tough decisions. As long as the new board of directors, which is compiled of executives from Grand-Am and ALMS, work well together, there should be minimal issues by the time 2014 rolls around.
I'm slowly becoming a fan of both series because of the great racing that has so much drama due to the time elements. It is amazing to watch how these teams work and the strategies that they to implement in order to survive these races.
The ALMS began in 1999, while Grand-Am began back in 2000. 2014 looks to bring great things for fans of American sports car racing.
Just as long as everyone is willing to play nice when these major decisions are made.
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