In 2006, the International Motor Sport Association (IMSA) introduced IMSA Lites. The series was created to provide an opportunity for drivers competing at the amateur level to advance to a professional series or to prepare for a category such as the American Le Mans (ALMS). The mission is to develop future drivers and teams for the ALMS and is now called the IMSA Prototype Lites.

Initially, the series featured three classes of purpose-built sports racing prototypes – Lites 1, Lites 2 and Lites 3. However, Lites 3 entries were declining each year and the 2010 championship was conducted for the Lites 1 and Lites 2 categories.

  • Lites 1 (L1) – This is the fastest category and is comprised exclusively of the Elan DP-02 manufactured by Elan Van Diemen. The DP-02 features a carbon fiber monocoque fitted with an aerodynamic package that includes a front splitter, diffuser and rear wing. The car is powered by a 2.3-liter four-cylinder Mazda MZR motor mounted to a six-speed sequential transmission.
  • Lites 2 (L2) – The West WR1000 is the chassis used in this category and is powered by a 1000-cc Kawasaki ZX engine. The car also uses an electronic paddle-shift system.

2010 IMSA Prototype Lites Championship consisted of eight race weekends, with doubleheaders at each event. The exception was Lime Rock which hosted a single round.

  • March 20 – Sebring International Raceway – 58th Mobil 1 12-Hours of Sebring
  • May 22 – Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca – Monterey Sports Car Championships
  • June 27 – New Jersey Motorsports Park – New Jersey Grand Prix
  • July 10 – Miller Motorsports Park – Utah Grand Prix
  • July 24 - Lime Rock Park – American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix
  • August 22 – Road America – Road Race Showcase
  • August 29 – Mosport International Raceway – Grand Prix of Mosport
  • October 2 - Road Atlanta – 13th Annual Petit Le Mans

In addition to a driver’s championship, there are also titles for Teams and Constructors.

The penultimate weekend of the 2010 IMSA Prototype Lites Championship was held at Mosport International Raceway during the Grand Prix of Mosport event. Drivers would compete in two contests around the ten-turn 2.459-mile road course.

The first lap through Mosport International Raceway’s Moss Corner for round twelve of the 2010 IMSA Prototype Lites Championship. Leading the field of eighteen competitors is the pole-sitter, Charlie Shears, in the CORE Autosport Elan DP-02. Behind Shears is the second-fastest qualifier, Matt Downs, driving the No. 12 Eurosport Racing Elan DP-02. Trailing the leaders are the Elan DP-02 of Gary Gibson and Antonio Downs.
Entering the penultimate weekend, Charlie Shears was leading the L1 title chase. Shears season to date included victories at Sebring and New Jersey. But just as important, he didn’t have any DNFs and scored points in every event. In Saturday’s contest at Mosport, the driver of the No. 21 CORE Autosport Elan DP-02 went flag-to-flag for the win. On Sunday, Shears finished third, but it was enough to secure the 2010 L1 crown.
One of the title contenders for the L2 championship was John Weisberg, who drove the No. 75 BERG Racing West WR1000. Weisberg’s record before Mosport included victories at Sebring, Laguna Seca, New Jersey, Lime Rock and Road America. He was the third-fastest qualifier in L2 for the weekend’s first contest and moved to the top spot for the win. In the finale, Weisberg earned another first-place result.
L1 category competitor Gary Gibson had garnered victories at Sebring and Lime Rock earlier in the season. The driver of the No. 13 Inspire Motorsports Elan DP-02 was third fastest in the qualifying session for round twelve at Mosport. During the contest, a pass on Matt Downs was rewarded with a runner-up result. Gibson started on the front row the following day but retired on lap-24.
Lucas Downs drove the No. 79 Eurosport Racing Elan DP-02 in the L1 category. Unlike his family members, Matt and Antonio, he was yet to collect a victory. Matt won round six at New Jersey and Antonio had first-place results at Utah and Road America. Lucas started race one at Mosport in the sixth position and finished fourth. On Sunday, he was gridded fourth but moved up the race order for the win.
As the season came to a conclusion, the L2 championship was turning into a battle between John Weisberg and Lee Alexander. Alexander was campaigning the No. 23 Factory 48 Motorsports West WR1000 and his season included two class wins. At Mosport, he finished three positions behind Weisberg in second place on Saturday. However, in round thirteen, Alexander was in the runner-up spot by 2.567-seconds.
Matt Downs scored an L1 victory in round six at New Jersey Motorsports Park. Before Mosport, his record also included podium results at Laguna Seca and New Jersey. Downs put the No. 12 Eurosport Racing Elan DP-02 second on the grid for the weekend’s first contest but lost a position and finished third. In the next race, he started on the pole and would lose a place to a hard-charging Lucas Downs and finish second.

1L1Charlie ShearsElan DP-0224-
2L1Gary GibsonElan DP-0224-
3L1Matt DownsElan DP-0224-
4L1Lucas DownsElan DP-0224-
5L1Antonio DownsElan DP-0224-
6L1Jonathan BennettElan DP-0224-
7L1Jon BrownsonElan DP-0224-
8L3David DucoteElan DP-0224-
9L3Wayne DucoteElan DP-0223-
10L1Richard FantElan DP-0223-
11L2John WeisbergWest WR100023-
12L1Dan WeylandElan DP-0223-
13L1Nick MajorsElan DP-0223-
14L2Lee AlexanderWest WR100023-
15L2Michal ChlumeckyWest WR100022-
16L2Jim GarrettWest WR100021-
17L2Max DeAngelisWest WR100017Did Not Finish
18L2Robert SabatoWest WR100013Did Not Finish

1L1Lucas DownsElan DP-0248-
2L1Matt DownsElan DP-0248-
3L1Charlie ShearsElan DP-0248-
4L1Antonio DownsElan DP-0248-
5L1Jon BrownsonElan DP-0248-
6L1Richard FantElan DP-0247-
7L3David DucoteElan DP-0247-
8L1Jonathan BennettElan DP-0246-
9L2John WeisbergWest WR100045-
10L2Lee AlexanderWest WR100045-
11L1Dan WeylandElan DP-0244-
12L3Wayne DucoteElan DP-0244-
13L2Jim GarrettWest WR100041-
14L2Max DeAngelisWest WR100041-
15L2Robert SabatoWest WR100037Did Not Finish
16L2Michal ChlumeckyWest WR100025Did Not Finish
17L1Gary GibsonElan DP-0224Did Not Finish
18L1Nick MajorsElan DP-0210Did Not Finish

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