The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will return to Lime Rock Park later this season. (IMSA photo)
LIME ROCK, Conn. – Lime Rock Park is back on track this year and will continue its long tradition of major sports car racing with three event weekends highlighting its 65th season.
After missing major spectator competition in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions, the historic 1.5-mile Lime Rock Park circuit fully re-opens its scenic hillsides for race fans in 2021, maintaining a tradition that began in 1957.
“Lime Rock Park is the perfect venue for spectators to finally get back outside after too many months of confinement,” said Dicky Riegel, Lime Rock’s President & CEO. “Its natural amphitheater setting among 400 acres allows fans to view the action and get comfortable from a huge range of locations,” he continued. “With no grandstands on the property, race fans can spread out a blanket and lawn chairs, enjoy food and drink from our concession stands and other offerings, and take in all the great racing within the open, beautiful Park grounds.”
Health and safety protocols are in place to ensure that visitors to Lime Rock Park have a positive track experience.
Major racing returns with the traditional Trans Am Memorial Day Classic May 28-31. The Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli will be in the spotlight, with 100-mile races on Saturday and Monday.
Local driver Chris Dyson will take on defending and seven-time champion Ernie Francis Jr., two-time champion Amy Ruman, second-generation veteran Simon Gregg and the other Trans Am regulars in the Saturday feature. The 1:20 p.m. race will spotlight the TA, XGT, SGT and GT classes.
Then, on Monday, the Trans Am TA2 class will take the green flag at 1:15 p.m.
The weekend also includes a full contingent of SportsCar Vintage Racing Ass’n events, with Mazda as the featured marque and International GT classes for late model Porsche and Ferrari competitors.
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship returns to Lime Rock on July 16-17 with the IMSA Northeast Grand Prix. The main event showcases the popular GT Le Mans and GT Daytona classes in a two-hour, 40-minute race, giving fans the final opportunity to see the Corvette C8.R in action for the final time in GTLM trim.
The weekend also includes the Lime Rock Park 120 for the IMSA Michelin Pilot SportsCar Challenge.
The major event season at Lime Rock concludes with the 39th annual Historic Festival on Labor Day weekend, Sept. 3-6. Continuing a tradition that began in 1982, the weekend includes competition with pre-1950 sports cars all the way up to the exotic prototypes of the 1990s and early 2000s.
The Festival’s “Sunday in the Park” includes a Concours d’Elegance and Gathering of the Marques, attracting nearly 1,000 historic cars and motorcycles. The weekend begins with the annual Historic Festival Vintage Race & Sports Car Parade that starts Thursday at 4 p.m. on the Sam Posey Straight.
The rally follows a 17-mile route on local roads through Lakeville and Salisbury.
Youth aged 16 and under are admitted free to all major weekends. Also free of charge are general outfield parking, courtesy golf cart shuttle rides and paddock access.
The three major weekends are complemented by a full slate of activities, including the SCCA Northeast Region on June 11-12, car clubs, car shows, private events, fireworks and more.
Over the years, Lime Rock Park has hosted many of America’s top road racing series, including Can-Am, Formula 5000, Camel GT, Formula Atlantic Grand-Am, American Le Mans and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East (now the ARCA Menards Series East).