Introduced in 2006, the International Motor Sport Association's (IMSA) series proved to be a popular championship. The class 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. In 2016, Mazda became the title sponsor and the series was renamed the Mazda Prototype Lites Presented by Cooper Tires.

In 2006, 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, the championship was conducted for the Lites 1 and Lites 2 categories. A similar situation occurred in 2016 when only two L2 competitors ran a limited schedule.

  • 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.

2016 Mazda Prototype Lites Presented by Cooper Tires consisted of six race weekends, with doubleheaders held at Sebring International Raceway, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Trois-Rivieres and Road Atlanta. Watkins Glen International and Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca each hosted three rounds.

  • March 17-18 – Sebring International Raceway – 12-Hours of Sebring
  • July 3 – Watkins Glen International – 6-Hours of the Glen
  • July 9-10 – Canadian Tire Motorsport Park – Sports Car Grand Prix
  • August 14 – Trois-Rivieres – Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres
  • September 11-13 – Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca – Monterey Grand Prix
  • September 29-30 - Road Atlanta – Petit Le Mans

The third weekend of the 2016 Mazda Prototype Lites Presented by Cooper Tires was held at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. Drivers would compete in two contests around the ten-turn 2.459-mile road course.

Clark Toppe, the driver of the No. 10 JDC Motorsports Elan DP-02, won the opening round of the season at Sebring. Since that event, he had been chasing Austin Versteeg to runner-up finishes. Toppe's title aspirations took a huge hit in the previous round at Watkins Glen when he failed to start and Versteeg grabbed the victory. However, he redeemed himself at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with first and second-place finishes.
The L1 points leader heading into the rounds at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Austin Versteeg, had an enviable record. The driver of the No. 7 JDC Motorsports Elan DP-02 had five podium results in as many starts, four of which were victories. Versteeg qualified second fastest for race one at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and finished behind his JDC teammate, Clark Toppe. In the finale, he returned to his winning ways.
The only L2 entry at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park was Max DeAngelis. DeAngelis drove the No. 07 Eurosport Racing prepared West WR1000. In the season's opening rounds at Sebring International Raceway, he was the only participant. DeAngelis skipped the three races at Watkins Glen International, which were won by Jay Salmon. In round six, DeAngelis finished fourteenth overall and in the next race, he was thirteenth.
Kyle Masson entered rounds six and seven at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with two L1 podium results and one finish outside the top-five, a sixth-place at Watkins Glen International. He qualified third fastest for Saturday's contest in the No. 18 Performance Tech Motorsports Elan DP-02 and held the position to the checkered flag. The next day, Masson was gridded fourth but fell out of contention on lap-20 and finished fifteenth.
Extreme Speed Motorsports' Maxwell Hanratty was delivering results similar to Kyle Masson. Before rounds six and seven, he had two rostrum finishes and one result outside the top-five, an eighth-place at Sebring. Hanratty qualified fourth fastest in the first race at Canadian Tire Motorsport but finished fifth. He started and finished third on Sunday but not before trading positions with Masson.

1L1Austin VersteegElan DP-0228-
2L1Clark ToppeElan DP-0228-
3L1Maxwell HanrattyElan DP-0228-
4L1Nathan BlokElan DP-0228-
5L1Michael WheldenElan DP-0228-
6L1Joel JancoElan DP-0228-
7L1Gary GibsonElan DP-0228-
8L1Brian AlderElan DP-0228-
9L1James DaysonElan DP-0228-
10L1Dave HouseElan DP-0228-
11L1Gerhard WatzingerElan DP-0228-
12L1Stuart RettieElan DP-0228-
13L2Max DeAngelisElan DP-0228-
14L1Jay SalmonElan DP-0228-
15L1Guy LaporteElan DP-0227-
16L1Kyle MassonElan DP-0219Did Not Finish
17L1Jon BrownsonElan DP-0214Did Not Finish
18L1Michal ChlumeckyElan DP-022Did Not Finish

1L1Clark ToppeElan DP-0222-
2L1Austin VersteegElan DP-0222-
3L1Kyle MassonElan DP-0222-
4L1Michael WheldenElan DP-0222-
5L1Maxwell HanrattyElan DP-0222-
6L1James DaysonElan DP-0222-
7L1Joel JancoElan DP-0222-
8L1Jon BrownsonElan DP-0222-
9L1Brian AlderElan DP-0222-
10L1Gerhard WatzingerElan DP-0222-
11L1Gary GibsonElan DP-0222-
12L1Stuart RettieElan DP-0222-
13L1Dave HouseElan DP-0221-
14L2Max DeAngelisElan DP-0221-
15L1Jay SalmonElan DP-0221-
16L1Michal ChlumeckyElan DP-0220-
17L1Guy LaporteElan DP-0219Did Not Finish
18L1Nathan BlokElan DP-0217Did Not Finish

Copyright Notice:
All content (photographs and text) appearing on this website are the exclusive property of © and are protected under International copyright laws. The subject matter on this website may not be reproduced, copied, stored or manipulated.

© Copyright 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017

Return to home page.