Team drivers Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.) and Gunnar Jeannette (Salt Lake City, Utah) went to Germany in late September and got their first laps behind the wheel of a Mercedes-AMG GT3. The pair came away enthusiastic about the prospect of being one of the first teams in IMSA to run the AMG GT3.
The team received their car on October 14 and is at Daytona today completing the second of a two day private test in preparation for the January Rolex 24 Hour race. In addition, the team has transitioned to the Riley Motorsports tent as a part of a two-car effort with the famed sports car competitors.
"When I first drove the Mercedes at Hockenheim in Germany I was absolutely blown away," MacNeil said. "I could tell within the first three corners that the car was so well balanced and was an absolute dream to drive. I'm excited to return to IMSA with our new sharper weapon. I'm really looking forward to bringing the new car to IMSA and seeing how it matches up against the other cars, which I think we should fare well. Riley has been a proven team for many years and it will be great to team up with them. They know how to manage their program very well and have done a great job with the Viper program over the past couple of years."
Jeannette is excited about returning to IMSA and racing the Mercedes.
"We didn't get a lot of time in the car when we tested at Hockenheim, but from the first laps in the car you could just tell that AMG had done their homework," Jeannette said. "Everything worked very well and the car instantly gives you confidence, which is what every driver wants. It will be great being a part of the WeatherTech Championship again! I am really looking forward to running with Riley Motorsports. Bill and the whole team have a very successful past and I hope that WeatherTech Racing can be a big part of the future. So far everything that I have seen has been very impressive and I can't wait to get started. The championship is going to be very tough this year, but I'm confident that the Riley guys and AMG will give us a good package to fight with all our competitors. It's very exciting to be a part of the first AMG program in IMSA. I'm counting the days until Daytona!"
View video of the No. 50 WeatherTech Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 race car here.
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will begin the 2017 season with the traditional Roar Before the 24 at Daytona, January 6-8, and then the 55th running of the Rolex 24 Hour At Daytona, January 26-29.
For more information on WeatherTech Racing, including race recaps, photos and team gear, please visit the newly designed team site at www.WeatherTechRacing.com. The new team site can now be accessed on any device and is quicker, easier to navigate and features extensive photo galleries, videos, team updates and more.