Prototype and Production-Based Race Cars of Japan and Neighboring Asian Countries Step into the Spotlight at HSR’s Longest Running Race Event this April at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida (December 15, 2023) – The 46th running of the Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) Mitty at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta will showcase next year the Cars of Japan as the Featured Marque of HSR’s longest running race, April 25 – 28. Prototype and production-based race cars from Japan from the last 50 years will take to the spotlight during HSR’s first blockbuster event of the 2024 season, including Saturday’s Cars of Japan Feature Race that will be one of the highlight races of a packed 46th Mitty race schedule on the 2.54-mile Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta road course just north of Atlanta.
The Cars of Japan celebration marks the third straight year HSR has showcased at the Mitty a geographical genre of cars rather than a specific make or model as the Featured Marque. This year’s 45th HSR Mitty featured 75 Years of NASCAR as part of the sanctioning body’s year-long Diamond Jubilee celebration and attracted a huge entry of all-American historic stock cars. In 2022, the globally popular Sports 2000 category, that was introduced in the UK in 1976, took center stage as the Featured Marque.
“The significant race wins and championships of Japanese manufacturers in major sports car competition around the world has been impressive and somewhat unheralded over the years, but we look forward to bringing some focus – and impressive race cars – to celebrate these achievement at the 46th Mitty,” said HSR President David Hinton. “Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta couldn’t be a better track to host the celebration as it was here Mazda Motorsport celebrated one of its greatest victories with an overall win at the 2021 Petit Le Mans in the final race for the Mazda RT24-P program. We look forward to lauding that triumph and so many other amazing sports car racing accomplishments over the last few decades by Japanese manufacturers next April.”
Mazda has been joined by Toyota/Lexus, Honda/Acura and Nissan/Datsun/Skyline – the 2018 HSR Mitty Featured Marque – as the Japanese standard bearers in international sports car racing since the last century, but other Japanese manufacturers have seen sports car racing success as well. Best known for dominance in international rally competition, Mitsubishis were also among the cars to beat in the early days of U.S. Showroom Stock endurance competition and were later successful in IMSA International Sedan.
Adding to the mix, HSR has opened up the Featured Marque celebration to include cars from Japan’s neighboring countries in Asia. Kia fielded factory-supported and championship-winning Optimas in World Challenge competition a decade ago while fellow South Korean manufacturer Hyundai’s earliest editions of its IMSA championship-winning TCR cars are now retired from contemporary racing and eligible for HSR competition.
In total, the 46th HSR Mitty on-track schedule is packed with up to 10 feature races and non-stop sprints, but an ample lineup of off-track activity and attractions are also part of this one-of-a-kind automotive extravaganza. Club corrals fill the Michelin Raceway infield, camping is available at every level and vendors offer amazing finds. A limited number of parade and touring lap sessions are also scheduled, offering a rare chance to drive your own car on the legendary Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta circuit.
In addition to the Cars of Japan, competing Run Groups at the HSR Mitty feature everything from nearly every type of sports car from the past 70 years to Stock Cars to open-wheel Formula and Indy cars.
Detailed Mitty event, entry list forms and ticket information will be available at www.HSRRace.com in the New Year.
About HSR: An International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) property, Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) was formed in the mid-1970s with an event at Road Atlanta. There was one goal then and it remains true today: to celebrate the race cars from the past. As a “time machine” of sights and sounds, HSR provides a venue for competitors and spectators alike to share in the wonderful history and excitement created by the cars that competed at race tracks around the world. HSR currently sanctions eight vintage and historic racing events at some of the world’s most renowned race tracks, including Road Atlanta, Sebring International Raceway, Daytona International Speedway and more. The complete schedule and full event information can be found on HSR’s website at www.HSRRace.com. Look for the HSR Channel on YouTube and follow HSR on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/HSRrace/ and on Twitter and Instagram at @HSRrace.