SEBRING — The state of Florida will be well represented both on track and on stage during the Michelin SportsCar Encore this weekend at Sebring International Raceway.

Gates open noon Friday (Nov. 9) at the historic 3.74-mile road racing circuit where fans will have the opportunity to witness professional sports car racing and a Saturday night concert featuring country music artists Love and Theft with special guests the Dairy Daughters.

Shelby Dressel, who grew up in Avon Park, Fla., is half of the Dairy Daughters duo that includes Megan Gerken. Dressel rose to fame on season nine of American Idol and Saturday’s concert marks her return home to Highlands County for the first time as part of the recently formed group.

Floridians will play a key role on track as well. Sunday’s International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) four-hour race for LMP3, GT4 and TCR cars boasts a solid field of cars and drivers based in Florida. Guy Cosmo (Palm Beach Gardens), Rod Randall (Tampa) and Joel Janco (Key Largo) have entered in the event.

The Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Challenge will race on both Saturday and Sunday. A strong field of 23 Mazda MX-5 Cup cars will be on the grid for the two 45-minute sprint races that include several Florida drivers. Among the favorites will be John Dean II of Sebring, a past series champion whose Sebring-based Sick Sideways Racing has prepared eight cars competing during the weekend.

Other Florida drivers entered in the Mazda MX-5 Challenge include Selin Rollan (Orlando) who earned third in the 2018 championship standings, Glenn McGee (Tampa) and Tyler Gonzalez (Orlando).

Tickets to the Michelin Encore will be available at the gate. A three-day ticket is $30 and includes admission to the concert that begins 6:30 p.m. Saturday. A Sunday only ticket will be available for $10. Military vets with ID will be admitted free on Sunday in honor of Veterans Day.

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