2012 FIA World Endurance Championship will kick off at Sebring

The first round of the 2012 FIA World Endurance Championship, promoted and organized by Automobile Club de l’Ouest, will kick off with the Sebring 12 Hours on 17th March 2012.  The agreement reached with the promoters of the American Le Mans Series was announced this morning at Road Atlanta (Georgia, United States) in the context of the Petit Le Mans, the sixth round of the 2011 Intercontinental Le Mans Cup, which will take place tomorrow.

The integration of the Sebring 12 Hours into the world endurance championship calendar for 2012, and beyond, is the extension of the partnership between the Automobile Club de l’Ouest and the American Le Mans Series, which began 13 years ago.

The Sebring 12-Hours race, which will host the first event in the history of the new world endurance championship, will celebrate its sixtieth anniversary in 2012, and the Le Mans 24- Hours event on 16-17 June will celebrate its eightieth anniversary. The Florida classic will also be the first round of the 2012 American Le Mans Series.

The full calendar of the FIA World Endurance Championship in partnership with the Automobile Club de l’Ouest will be announced shortly.

Jean-Claude Plassart, President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest: “Thanks to the American Le Mans Series, the Le Mans Series in Europe and the Asian Le Mans Series, the ACO continues to promote the Le Mans values throughout the world. These series have led to the creation of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup in 2010 and now the FIA World Endurance Championship in partnership with the ACO. We’re delighted that the first round in the history of this new endurance championship will take place at Sebring, consolidating our historic links with Don Panoz and the American Le Mans Series.”

Scott Atherton, President and CEO of the American Le Mans Series: “We’re very happy with our partnership with the ACO, as our cooperation helps develop the American Le Mans Series and Le Mans-type races in North America.”