The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship has set up shop at the Circuit of the Americas this weekend, and the main event is set to get underway later today.
In qualifying, the Cadillac team showed no signs of loosening its grip on the lead. Ricky Taylor put the No. 10 Konica Minolta DPi-V.R a massive 1.5 seconds ahead of the field, smashing the previous lap record by double that. The team will be looking for its fourth consecutive win after last month’s victory in Long Beach.
Second in-class went to the Tequila Patrón Nissan of Johannes van Overbeek and Ed Brown. The Whelen Engineering Caddy of Dane Cameran and Eric Curran was less than three-hundredths back in third. In the Prototype class, second through seventh were separated by less than a second in qualifying.
Prototype Challenge was a runaway qualifying victory for James French and Patricio O’Ward. The team’s No. 38 Oreca nailed a 2:00.066 lap, three seconds ahead of the second-place No. 26 BAR1 Motorsports car.
The GTLM class proved a much closer fight. Unexpectedly, both the Corvette and Ford teams were locked out the podium. The big BMW M6s of Team RLL took well to the flowing layout of COTA, with the No. 24 and 25 cars taking first and third, respectively. Slotted between them was the No. 62 Ferrari of Toni Villander and ex-F1 driver Giancarlo Fisichella.
The two Ford GTs rounded out the top five in GTLM. The Corvettes landed further back in sixth and eighth, with the No. 911 Porsche sandwiched between them.
Porsche topped the GTD timing boards at the end of yesterday’s qualifying. The Alegra Motorsports 911 GT3 R found a tenth over the No. 15 3GT Racing Lexus RCF, which was in turn over a second ahead of third place’s Paul Miller Racing Huracan.
The new NSX GT3s of Michael Shank Racing struggled in Texas, turning in times worth ninth and thirteenth in GTD.
Racing kicks off at 1435 EDT today, running for a comparatively short 160 minutes. You’ll be able to tune in online to watch for free on IMSA.TV. Traditional television coverage is provided by FOX. Other useful links are below:
Good luck to all racers this weekend!
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