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Old 7 Jan 2018, 23:30 (Ref:3791296)   #46
jjvincent
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I would think the various BoP processes nowadays require a much bigger technical department, contributing to the current oversized overhead.
Other sanctioning bodies that do BoP hire it out and it take about 3 people to process the data. I assume IMSA needs 100 to do the same job. I assume IMSA get's it spot on every time then.
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Old 8 Jan 2018, 00:14 (Ref:3791300)   #47
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I think the bigger issue for GTD going forward is that the convergence talks for GTE and GT3 were resumed and, while no progress has been made, they have not been completely abandoned. I think an eventual converging of the two classes is ultimately inevitable, and when it happens that's when IMSA will have a quandary to deal with.

Yeah, you could just run two classes, but I think it would ultimately just turn into all factory teams. The minnows should have a lower class to consider.

Updating GT4 into a "Super GT4" certainly seems like a good idea to me, but maybe there should be something unique for that class. Jonerz proposed the idea of using the TA2 specifications, which would certainly help it stand out uniquely, and would be nicely low-cost.

So.. If any variation of GT4 was not an option, what would YOU replace GTD with should GT3/GTE convergence actually happen?
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Old 8 Jan 2018, 19:13 (Ref:3791438)   #48
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I think the bigger issue for GTD going forward is that the convergence talks for GTE and GT3 were resumed and, while no progress has been made, they have not been completely abandoned. I think an eventual converging of the two classes is ultimately inevitable, and when it happens that's when IMSA will have a quandary to deal with.

Yeah, you could just run two classes, but I think it would ultimately just turn into all factory teams. The minnows should have a lower class to consider.

Updating GT4 into a "Super GT4" certainly seems like a good idea to me, but maybe there should be something unique for that class. Jonerz proposed the idea of using the TA2 specifications, which would certainly help it stand out uniquely, and would be nicely low-cost.

So.. If any variation of GT4 was not an option, what would YOU replace GTD with should GT3/GTE convergence actually happen?
To me super GT4 sounds like GT4s with bigger rear wings which would takes us back to Grand Am GT essentially which had good numbers. I am ok with that as long as a pro/factory based GT category remains viable. But this is an idea for 2020 at earliest. Maybe 2021.
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Old 8 Jan 2018, 20:19 (Ref:3791445)   #49
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There was a time where the series had about 80-100 entrants per event. Thus, they had to split the races because too many cars. Top that off with GA had a total of two haulers and brought 35 employees to the track for a combined Conti/Rolex weekend. With IMSA it went to 130 employees and 7 haulers. I suspect that the increase in the number of employees, number of haulers and the reduction in entrants, makes the current model where you need to get the money from the competitors to make it work. That would explain why there's an an increase in the amount the teams pay to IMSA and the reduction onto what they pay out.

I run my own business and I know a number of other former team owners and renters that do the same. They just have a hard time accepting that IMSA can decide to run at an inflation rate 10X than what they an do. In the end, they go elsewhere. IMSA thinks that the TV time makes up for it but it doesn't. In that day of age, TV is out and streaming it in. Thus explains the disconnect with PWC and IMSA with the new customer base.
Yeah, all of the above totally makes sense. (owners not being happy with the changes, not seeing the dollars and cents add up) I can't believe Grand Am ran a combined Koni/Rolex weekend with 35 people. I have to admit to being one of the grand-am haters back in the day. But then APR got involved with Koni Challenge and I went to a couple of those races, and then I started paying attention to the GT stuff again, and by the time the did the Gen 3 DPs I was back to being a fan. I kind of miss the "DIY" aesthetic of Grand am in some ways. Like the non-standardized numbering for cars and the hot-rod nature of the cars. (GT3 Cups with RSR parts and what not)

As i've kicked it around I do like the GT4 as GTD angle, but you'd still end up with 3 classes in the big show.

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Old 9 Jan 2018, 02:18 (Ref:3791473)   #50
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I think the bigger issue for GTD going forward is that the convergence talks for GTE and GT3 were resumed and, while no progress has been made, they have not been completely abandoned. I think an eventual converging of the two classes is ultimately inevitable, and when it happens that's when IMSA will have a quandary to deal with.

Yeah, you could just run two classes, but I think it would ultimately just turn into all factory teams. The minnows should have a lower class to consider.

Updating GT4 into a "Super GT4" certainly seems like a good idea to me, but maybe there should be something unique for that class. Jonerz proposed the idea of using the TA2 specifications, which would certainly help it stand out uniquely, and would be nicely low-cost.

So.. If any variation of GT4 was not an option, what would YOU replace GTD with should GT3/GTE convergence actually happen?
In my opinion the GTE / GT3 convergence will finally be successful, if finally the ACO concrete the GTproto / GT1 idea for the Top class in 2021, then perhaps some GTE Teams decide to hit the jump to the Top category, and in this way a GTE category has no sense.
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Old 9 Jan 2018, 11:01 (Ref:3791515)   #51
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In my opinion the GTE / GT3 convergence will finally be successful, if finally the ACO concrete the GTproto / GT1 idea for the Top class in 2021, then perhaps some GTE Teams decide to hit the jump to the Top category, and in this way a GTE category has no sense.
GTE barely makes sense as-is with how big GT3 has gotten. Some GT3 cars could approach previous-generation LMP2 speeds if they ran unrestricted.

In the big picture, the only benefit GTE has is that it's not quite as pricey as GT3. All GTE has to offer is an indication of what areas the SRO/FIA should put some limits on development in order to reign in GT3 costs. Aerodynamically the only difference between GT3 and GTE is the front splitter and rear wing. ESPECIALLY the rear wing.

The GTE/GT3 convergence is less of a convergence and more of a "figure out where to put some cost saving restrictions on GT3 and convince the ACO to shut down GTE." And the realization is probably what caused talks to break down in the last effort. But as things have made it all the more clear that GT3 has a brighter future than GTE, some egos had to be set aside for the future.

But they certainly don't need to rush it, and clearly aren't. If we hear any confirmation of convergence before 2020, unless it's merely as an experiment by IMSA, I'll be stunned.
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Old 9 Jan 2018, 13:45 (Ref:3791552)   #52
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GTE barely makes sense as-is with how big GT3 has gotten. Some GT3 cars could approach previous-generation LMP2 speeds if they ran unrestricted.

In the big picture, the only benefit GTE has is that it's not quite as pricey as GT3. All GTE has to offer is an indication of what areas the SRO/FIA should put some limits on development in order to reign in GT3 costs. Aerodynamically the only difference between GT3 and GTE is the front splitter and rear wing. ESPECIALLY the rear wing.

The GTE/GT3 convergence is less of a convergence and more of a "figure out where to put some cost saving restrictions on GT3 and convince the ACO to shut down GTE." And the realization is probably what caused talks to break down in the last effort. But as things have made it all the more clear that GT3 has a brighter future than GTE, some egos had to be set aside for the future.

But they certainly don't need to rush it, and clearly aren't. If we hear any confirmation of convergence before 2020, unless it's merely as an experiment by IMSA, I'll be stunned.
Some pretty stout comments in there...
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Old 9 Jan 2018, 19:54 (Ref:3791616)   #53
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Some pretty stout comments in there...
Stout but true. GT3 is an absolutely crazy class in both good and bad ways, stabilizing it for the long-term future is the best overall move.
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Old 9 Jan 2018, 20:05 (Ref:3791618)   #54
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GTE barely makes sense as-is with how big GT3 has gotten. Some GT3 cars could approach previous-generation LMP2 speeds if they ran unrestricted.

In the big picture, the only benefit GTE has is that it's not quite as pricey as GT3. All GTE has to offer is an indication of what areas the SRO/FIA should put some limits on development in order to reign in GT3 costs. Aerodynamically the only difference between GT3 and GTE is the front splitter and rear wing. ESPECIALLY the rear wing.

The GTE/GT3 convergence is less of a convergence and more of a "figure out where to put some cost saving restrictions on GT3 and convince the ACO to shut down GTE." And the realization is probably what caused talks to break down in the last effort. But as things have made it all the more clear that GT3 has a brighter future than GTE, some egos had to be set aside for the future.

But they certainly don't need to rush it, and clearly aren't. If we hear any confirmation of convergence before 2020, unless it's merely as an experiment by IMSA, I'll be stunned.
I have understood that the GTE was more expensive than the GT3, I remember reading that the main differences are the engines much closer to road car in GT3 and much more development of the GTE.
At least it is what I know until now, so could you give me more details of why GT3 is more expensive than GTE?
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Old 9 Jan 2018, 21:47 (Ref:3791626)   #55
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I have understood that the GTE was more expensive than the GT3, I remember reading that the main differences are the engines much closer to road car in GT3 and much more development of the GTE.
At least it is what I know until now, so could you give me more details of why GT3 is more expensive than GTE?
Well, for one thing, the claim that the engines are much closer to the road cars in GT3 is complete bunk. In GT3 you're not even required to use an engine that has any connection to the model being used - the only reason manufacturers do so is because they ARE required to base the engine on something from their road car lineup, and quite often the engine from the road car is the best base. GTE's displacement limit often causes the engine to be more different than in GT3, but said limit also ultimately puts a cap on what they can squeeze out of things, keeping the costs there in (relative) check.

Quick aside, that "relative" portion is important - I am not arguing, and nor should anyone with a brain, that anything about this stuff is cheap by the basic definition. We're talking cheap relative to each other.

The other reason GT3 has gotten so maddeningly expensive is because they have next to no restrictions regarding development of aerodynamics. Compare for example, the Corvette C7.R GTE:


To the Corvette C7 GT3-R GT3 car:



Right away you should be able to see how much crazier the rear wing is on the GT3. If you look more you'll notice a lot more crazy details in the aero around the wheel arches, and while those photos don't illustrate it very clearly the front splitter is a lot more developed on the GT3 version(I'd post photos to show that, but this post is bloated enough, so look it up yourself).

In the same vein, GT3 is far looser about suspension development than GTE.

So, to summarize, GT3 can do more with the engine, aero, and suspension than GTE can. This is why many cars are more expensive than GTE cars can tend to be.

This is not universal, of course - From what I've heard the Porsche GT3 is a fair bit cheaper than their GTE, and despite the craziness the above exampled Corvette apparently costs about the same as what Labre pays for theirs. But then you have the Ferrari, the GT3 version of which evidently costs more than the LMP2 chassis AND engine cost cap(and bear in mind that not all LMP2s are actually sold at the capped price), far more than teams get their GTE models for. The McLarens are up there in price as well, but they don't have a GTE car to compare to, and they're a company I imagine would build a GTE with a sky-high pricetag as well.

But by and large, GT3 cars are a fair bit pricier than GTE due to a far more open development allowance. The entire concept of the class was built around balancing cars of vastly different design, so it's frankly no surprise it's gone to such levels.

Performance-wise, the FIA GT3 BoP, used by Pirelli World Challenge, has been ~2 seconds slower than GTE at most US tracks. Both classes are restricted down from their full potential, but left unleashed most believe that GT3 cars would decimate the majority of GTE cars(the Ford GT is one of the few believed to be able to beat GT3 cars if all ran unrestricted). This is why not that long ago, a "Super GT3" idea was floated(during a rumored split from Class One regs by Super GT that ended up being completely baseless), and why the idea continues to be talked about by some engineers who like the idea of an enhanced version of an existing class.

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Old 9 Jan 2018, 23:42 (Ref:3791638)   #56
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Well, for one thing, the claim that the engines are much closer to the road cars in GT3 is complete bunk. In GT3 you're not even required to use an engine that has any connection to the model being used - the only reason manufacturers do so is because they ARE required to base the engine on something from their road car lineup, and quite often the engine from the road car is the best base. GTE's displacement limit often causes the engine to be more different than in GT3, but said limit also ultimately puts a cap on what they can squeeze out of things, keeping the costs there in (relative) check.

Quick aside, that "relative" portion is important - I am not arguing, and nor should anyone with a brain, that anything about this stuff is cheap by the basic definition. We're talking cheap relative to each other.

The other reason GT3 has gotten so maddeningly expensive is because they have next to no restrictions regarding development of aerodynamics. Compare for example, the Corvette C7.R GTE:


To the Corvette C7 GT3-R GT3 car:



Right away you should be able to see how much crazier the rear wing is on the GT3. If you look more you'll notice a lot more crazy details in the aero around the wheel arches, and while those photos don't illustrate it very clearly the front splitter is a lot more developed on the GT3 version(I'd post photos to show that, but this post is bloated enough, so look it up yourself).

In the same vein, GT3 is far looser about suspension development than GTE.

So, to summarize, GT3 can do more with the engine, aero, and suspension than GTE can. This is why many cars are more expensive than GTE cars can tend to be.

This is not universal, of course - From what I've heard the Porsche GT3 is a fair bit cheaper than their GTE, and despite the craziness the above exampled Corvette apparently costs about the same as what Labre pays for theirs. But then you have the Ferrari, the GT3 version of which evidently costs more than the LMP2 chassis AND engine cost cap(and bear in mind that not all LMP2s are actually sold at the capped price), far more than teams get their GTE models for. The McLarens are up there in price as well, but they don't have a GTE car to compare to, and they're a company I imagine would build a GTE with a sky-high pricetag as well.

But by and large, GT3 cars are a fair bit pricier than GTE due to a far more open development allowance. The entire concept of the class was built around balancing cars of vastly different design, so it's frankly no surprise it's gone to such levels.

Performance-wise, the FIA GT3 BoP, used by Pirelli World Challenge, has been ~2 seconds slower than GTE at most US tracks. Both classes are restricted down from their full potential, but left unleashed most believe that GT3 cars would decimate the majority of GTE cars(the Ford GT is one of the few believed to be able to beat GT3 cars if all ran unrestricted). This is why not that long ago, a "Super GT3" idea was floated(during a rumored split from Class One regs by Super GT that ended up being completely baseless), and why the idea continues to be talked about by some engineers who like the idea of an enhanced version of an existing class.
Thanks for your answer, I hope that the Super GT3 materializes at some moment.
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Old 10 Jan 2018, 01:07 (Ref:3791646)   #57
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Thanks for your answer, I hope that the Super GT3 materializes at some moment.
Don't get your hopes up - there's no immediate need for such a class, and nobody is actively developing one. It's just a possibility that was floated by an unknown source during a time of concern that ended up being much ado about nothing, and it only endures in the minds of people like myself who like to think about intriguing potential classes.

There's no need for it unless there's a complete collapse of either LMP(and by complete I mean both P1 AND P2), or Class One.
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Old 10 Jan 2018, 07:05 (Ref:3791673)   #58
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GTE doesn't require using the same engine as the street car and multiple cars in the class do not.
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The engine must be derived from a series production Engine produced at more than 300 units and
fitted to a series vehicle from the same manufacturer.
The "crazy" bodywork on the Callaway GT3 is mostly styling. Some very good GT3s use almost identical bodywork to a GTE car.

GT3 cars being faster than GTE unrestricted might have been the case under the 2015 regulations but isn't really under the 2017 regulations that have given GTE cars similarly large aero devices. Most of the time GTE runs really restrictive BoP itself. Some GT3s might have bigger engines but they aren't engineered to run at significantly higher outputs regardless.

The 488 GT3's purchase price is really high but that doesn't account for what it includes. The GT3 and GTE only have around $60,000 worth different parts. The GTE almost certainly costs more per engine hour of the two though, and one of the reasons it's so expensive for a GT3 probably is that it's 90% by cost a GTE car and saving on development rather than taking advantage of GT3's looser rules to reduce costs for the customer.
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Old 10 Jan 2018, 11:27 (Ref:3791711)   #59
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Of the cars in GTE, there are what 3 GT3 cars? Not a lot to compare what the GT3 vs GTE costs are. And one is a GTE car with a parts kit to make it GT3, and if I recall about 125k to move up. But far easier to get a GT3 and build your GTE as Risi did with the sadly quickly wrecked car at LM. Corvette is two very different builders so comparing costs, or design, is a fool's errand. And Posrche, well the engine isn't even in the same spot so no point in comparing there. But of those three I've seen numbers tossed around to indicate the GTEs are more expensive and harder to get. And well a Corvette GTE, better luck breeding unicorns there.

But maybe those with numbers can actually share, it doesn't seem to me the higher expense and speed of GT3 is really reflected. Especially when it is often an UNRESTRICTED GT3 compared to a rules restrained GTE. Compare them at max ability or by their own rules but don't pick and chose.
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Old 10 Jan 2018, 11:50 (Ref:3791716)   #60
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The Ferrari 488 GTE comes out cheaper if you buy the GT3 version and the GTE conversion kit from Ferrari, rather than buying the GTE version straight from them.

It sounds barmy, but I assume there's a good reason for it.
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