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IMSA ROAD AMERICA QUALIFYING ROUND UP

CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD AMERICA: POLE POSITION START FOR NO. 4 CORVETTE

Corvette Racing’s Oliver Gavin will start from pole position of the GT Le Mans field after qualifying for Sunday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s Road Race Showcase.

Gavin, in the No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C7.R, was the fastest qualifier Saturday with a lap of 2:00.663 (120.772 mph). It marks the team’s first Road America pole position since 2010. Teammate Jan Magnussen will start fifth in class with a lap of 2:01.085 (120.351 mph) in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette but was less than 0.3 seconds from the front row.

The top five cars in GTLM were within 0.751 seconds. Tom Blomqvist in the No. 25 BMW was the fastest driver in GTLM qualifying, but both BMWs failed post-qualifying inspection to elevate both Gavin and Magnussen.

Corvette Racing will go for its eighth class victory at Road America and first since 2016. The race begins at 1:35 p.m. CT on Sunday.

Saturday’s GTLM qualifying session was delayed 15 minutes due to severe weather in the area. Both Corvettes were first out once the track went green with the track mostly dry. The only damp part of the circuit was the final corner, and both Corvettes went off track on their opening laps. Both Gavin and Magnussen recovered without damage. Each was happy with the overall balance of their Corvettes and expressed high optimism for Sunday’s two-hour, 40-minute race.

Magnussen and Antonio Garcia entered Road America third in GTLM points and well within striking distance for a third consecutive Drivers Championship. Naturally, their first victory together at Road America couldn’t come at a better time than Sunday. Gavin and Tommy Milner, back after missing two races with an injured left hand, were the most recent winners for Corvette Racing in Elkhart Lake with a victory in 2016.

Both Corvettes finished on the class podium a year ago with Gavin and Milner finishing second, just ahead of their teammates.

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – GTLM POLE-WINNER: “It was a good session for us. We found some speed in the car. I think it’s most probably the best the track has ever been here for our car in terms of the grip level. That little bit of rain and the way the conditions changed. It was super fast. And then it looked like the BMW was just that tick quicker, but now they got bumped. This day just keeps getting better and let’s hope this just continues on and into a great race tomorrow. Leading from the front, that’s the best place to start, so I will definitely take that. I’m very pleased for the guys. It has been a tough year particularly for the 4 Corvette, but this is a great little reward for all those guys, all their hard work. Keep digging. Chuck (Houghton, No. 4 Corvette engineer) and all the guys on the engineering staff gave me fantastic car in qualifying. We’ll take it and we’ll be very happy to start on the pole tomorrow for the big race.”

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED FIFTH IN GTLM: “It was not an easy session with it raining a little bit. There was a big moment in Turn 14 to stop the first timed lap because that corner was properly wet and you can’t see it; there is a change of tarmac there and the fresh tarmac is darker. So there was nothing that pointed to it being wetter than any place else. A big save… I got close to the wall, but I gathered it back up and got back in the game. It could have been way worse. “The car was good. I am impressed with how fast the track is… how much faster we could go than any time previously. I think I wasn’t prepared for how much traction grip there was. I knew the car was good, but I kept kicking myself every time. I thought I got on the the throttle early, early but I just never got full potential out of it. The car is definitely better than what we managed right now. We didn’t make the best of it. Plus Turn 14 kind of embedded itself a little bit. Even though it was probably full dry at the end, it was hard trust 100 percent because it came out of nowhere. There was spray and then we went off. So that was hard to let go of. But the field is super close. We had a good long run in practice yesterday so hopefully that will come in handy tomorrow.”

Source. Corvette Racing

Keating Earns First WeatherTech Championship Motul Pole Award Following Weather Delay Stoppage at Road America

Mother Nature was on Ben Keating’s side as he qualified for Sunday’s IMSA Road Race Showcase at Road America.

With five minutes remaining in the 15-minute session, a severe weather notice in the area halted on-track activity momentarily, but long enough to throw the checkered flag on IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GT Daytona (GTD) qualifying.

At the end, it was Keating’s time of two minutes, 5.250 seconds (116.349 mph) that was best-in-class and a new track record on the 4.048-mile road course in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Keating will share driving duties of the No. 33 Riley Motorsports-Team AMG Mercedes-AMG GT3 with Jeroen Bleekemolen in the race.

“It’s shocking actually,” said Keating. “I’ve been racing in IMSA for six years now. I do love this place. Kudos to the Riley guys. We came off the truck with just a perfect car. That has enabled us to spend a lot of time with a really good car and get confident. Quite frankly, I’m driving here in a way I haven’t been able to drive before because I haven’t had the car for it. It’s been exciting, it’s been hair-raising.”

It was Keating’s first career Motul Pole Award in the WeatherTech Championship. He and Bleekemolen will seek their first podium of the season, with their best finish of fourth so far this year coming in March’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Presented by Advance Auto Parts.

“I knew that the third lap on these tires was going to be the best one and everything came together just perfectly,” Keating said. “I’m just really happy with the lap and really happy to be on the pole for the first time ever.”

Corey Lewis qualified the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3 in second place at 2:05.663 (115.966 mph). Lewis – who is substituting for the remainder of the year for injured driver Ryan Hardwick – will co-drive with Bryan Sellers.

Matt Plumb delivered the best performance for the McLaren 720S GT3 so far in the WeatherTech Championship, qualifying Compass Racing’s No. 76 McLaren third at 2:05.723 (115.911 mph) within half a second of Keating’s time. Plumb and co-driver Paul Holton have a best finish of 10th twice so far in the McLaren 720S GT3’s three WeatherTech Championship races.

Source. IMSA

Hindman Qualifies Fifth for Meyer Shank Racing at Road America

After lightning came into the area, qualifying for the IMSA Road Race Showcase ended with a red flag on Saturday, completing the session early and preventing Trent Hindman from being able to improve on his fifth place starting position for Sunday’s race at Road America with the No. 86 AutoNation Acura NSX GT3.

Having to manage the increased challenge for the team with the added ballast for the NSX GT3, Meyer Shank Racing still worked to find the fastest way around the 4.0-mile circuit, improving all weekend as the team came through for Hindman and teammate Mario Farnbacher heading into Qualifying.

The midday qualifying run was under green for just nine minutes before the session was red flagged for lightning in the area. Hindman stood at the top of the charts for several laps before getting caught out by the red flag.

Hindman finished the session fifth, posting a 2:06.028-second lap.

“We did the best that we could in that qualifying session,” said Hindman. “The guys put in so much work overnight to get the car set for qualifying today, so I feel bad that I couldn’t get more out of the car. With the red flag there wasn’t much else that we could do. We will have to see how everyone stands up against each other during the race tomorrow.”

Source. Sunday Group

WeatherTech Racing to Start on Fifth Row at Road America

WeatherTech Racing drivers Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.) and Toni Vilander (Kankaanpää, Finland) will start tomorrow’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Road America from the fifth row.

MacNeil had the wheel of the No. 63 WeatherTech Racing Ferrari for what was supposed to be a 15-minute qualifying session. The run time was cut short due to lightening in the area. MacNeil was able put in just three flying laps in the Scuderia Corsa prepared Ferrari before the session was stopped. He posted a fast time of 2:06.537 that will have him starting the race from the fifth-row for tomorrow’s 1:35 p.m. ET start.

“It was an okay qualifying session,” MacNeil said. “We’re starting tenth which is not ideal. On my second flyer I pushed too hard in Turn 7 and went four wheels off in the grass. I gathered it back up for another lap that was showing faster when unfortunately, a red flag came out. We found some more speed in the car over the last few days so thanks to the Scuderia Corsa crew for the effort. Thankfully tomorrow is not a 30-minute race, it’s almost three hours so we have time and we’ll be pushing hard.”

Source. Kyle Chura/WeatherTech Racing

JDC-Miller Cadillac to Start Road America Fifth

The No. 84 JDC-Miller Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R driven by Simon Trummer will start the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Road America from the third row tomorrow.

IMSA WeatherTech DPi Road America Qualifying Results:
1. No. 6 Acura DPi 1:48.715
5. No. 84 JDC-Miller Cadillac DPi-V.R, 1:49.911
6. No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R, 1:50.111
7. No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R, 1:50.783
8. No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R, 1:50.799
9. No. 85 JDC-Miller Cadillac DPi-V.R, 1:51.251

The No. 84 JDC-Miller Cadillac DPi-V.R was showing good speed all weekend. Trummer was able to keep his composure as the 15-minute qualifying session was red flagged and restarted. He went onto to post a time of 1:48.715 registering the fastest lap for the Cadillac fivesome in qualifying at the 4.048 mile, 14-turn Road America circuit located an hour north of Milwaukee.

“I am super happy for us – for the team,” Trummer said. “It is difficult to compete with the top cars, we know why, but it is the first time this season we have been the top Cadillac in qualifying. It is very hard work here, but I love this track. I knew we could do something if we got the car right. We have good straight-line speed here this weekend. The guys have been doing a lot of work the past few weeks. The lap was good I am happy with P5 and being the fastest Cadillac. We are looking forward to the race!”

Pipo Derani had the wheel of the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R for qualifying. He posted a time of 1:50.111 that will have he and Felipe Nasr starting sixth.

“I was pushing with everything I had,” Derani said. “We are just doing our jobs and unfortunately right now the best we can do is qualify sixth. It is not ideal because we are fighting for a championship. There is a big gap to the Acuras and Mazdas but we will do the best that we can with what we have.”

In the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R Joao Barbosa drove to a time of 1:50.783 that will have him and teammate Filipe Albuquerque starting seventh.

“It was a shame we had a red flag on my second lap, which was right at the peak of the tires so we were a little unlucky there,” Barbosa said. “You always take that risk when you wait to go out-I had no traffic at all but we just got caught out a bit. It was looking good on that second lap but it went red so we weren’t able to finish. I went back out for a run at the end and the car was feeling pretty good. I think we will see what we’ve got. Cadillac has had a long dry spell since they added weight to the car after Sebring. But this is a good race car and even though it will be hard with the extra weight, hopefully we will be able to catch up to the guys up front on a long run.”

Renger Van Der Zande, teamed with Jordan Taylor, in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R had his fast lap interrupted by the red flag. He put in a lap of 1:50.799 that will have the team starting eighth.

“I think the lap would have been like a high 49 and the red flag just blew it,” Van Der Zande said. “I had two corners to go when the red flag came out and I couldn’t finish that lap. That’s the danger of qualifying, sometimes – you get a red flag and that basically ruins your qualifying. After the red flag, I felt the front tires were gone for the peak of the tire but I managed to do a reasonable lap time for the condition of the tires. It could have been at least eight tenths quicker, for sure, maybe more. So, it was very unfortunate. I’m not happy with this qualifying. We have no chance against the others, but you want to at least perform to the ultimate best of your car and that’s not showing with this qualifying result.”

Misha Goikhberg in the partner yellow No. 85 JDC-Miller Motorsport Cadillac DPi-V.R took a more conservative approach choosing to save tires for the race, he and Tristan Vautier will start the race from ninth.

“I just did two laps,” Goikhberg said. “We had a decent couple of laps. When the red flag came out we had one heat cycle in the tires and we decided not to go back out and save the tires for the race. We are getting some tire degredation here, so better to save them. We took a bit of a hit in qualifying and our starting position, but hopefully it will pay off at the start of the race.”

Source. Kyle Chura/Cadillac Racing

Porsche 911 RSR start from grid row three and four

The Porsche GT Team has qualified on positions six and eight for the eighth round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Road America. Due to a thunderstorm sweeping through Elkhart Lake (Wisconsin/USA), Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) in the No. 912 car and Patrick Pilet (France) in the No. 911 vehicle delayed taking up Saturday’s 15-minute qualifying session. Setting a time of 2.01.038 minutes, the driver crew Vanthoor and Earl Bamber (New Zealand) heads into Sunday’s race from position six. Pilet lapped the 6.515-kilometre circuit in 2:01.836 minutes. He takes up the race from the eighth grid spot with his teammate Nick Tandy (Great Britain).

The sun was still shining on the storied racetrack shortly before the start of the qualifying, when suddenly dark clouds gathered overhead, lightning flashed and raindrops began to fall. The predicted thunderstorm, however, passed by the track. The strategy for a slightly damp track that the team had put in place did not play out as expected. The two ca. 510 hp Porsche 911 RSR will now have to launch a pursuit through the field over 2:40-hour event. So far this season, at least one of the two Porsche crews has climbed the podium, and the Porsche GT Team has notched up five victories from seven races.

The qualifying session for the 15-strong GTD class field was shortened by five minutes due to the weather. In the red-flagged session, the Canadian Zacharie Robichon posted the fourth quickest time at the wheel of the 500+hp Porsche 911 GT3 R fielded by the Pfaff Motorsports customer team. Anthony Imperato’s vehicle campaigned by Wright Motorsports landed on P9. The owner of the Park Place Motorsports squad, Patrick Lindsey, planted his 911 on eleventh place.

The race over 2:40 hours takes off on Sunday, 4 August, at 1:35pm local time (8:35pm CEST) and can be viewed live outside the USA and Canada on http://www.imsa.com.

Qualifying quotes
Steffen Höllwarth (Programme Manager IMSA SportsCar Championship): “Positions six and eight are certainly not a satisfactory outcome, especially in light of the fact that we were the fastest in all three practice sessions. It was critical to be out there with the right tyre pressure when the track offered the most grip. The others managed this a little better than us today. We’re facing a major catch-up job tomorrow.”

Laurens Vanthoor (Porsche 911 RSR #912): “My qualifying lap was really good. Our setup was better than in free practice. Although the track was a little damp, I managed to be six-tenths of a second faster than in the previous session. Still, it was only good enough for sixth.”

Patrick Pilet (Porsche 911 RSR #911): “That qualifying wasn’t easy for us. We went out in slippery conditions just after a short rain shower and therefore adjusted the tyre pressure a little too high. The first lap was fine, but then the tyres got too warm and didn’t offer the grip we needed.”

Source. Porsche

Cameron Breaks Track Record, Leads Front Row Sweep for Acura Team Penske at Road America

Dane Cameron clearly knows the quick way around Road America.

He heads into Sunday’s IMSA Road Race Showcase looking for his fourth career victory at the four-mile Wisconsin road circuit. And he’ll do that from the pole position after breaking the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship track record with a lap of one minute, 48.715 seconds (134.045 mph) in the No. 6 Acura Team Penske ARX-05 Daytona Prototype international (DPi) machine.

Cameron went nearly three seconds faster than the previous WeatherTech Championship record of 1:51.644 set by Robert Alon last year in a JDC-Miller Motorsports ORECA LMP2 machine to score the Motul Pole Award. And he needed every bit of it, as teammate Helio Castroneves threw down a last-lap flyer of his own in the 15-minute qualifying session to put the No. 7 Acura DPi on the outside of the front row, a scant, 0.016 seconds slower than Cameron’s lap.

“It got a little stressful there for us,” Cameron said. “It got a little close, good job to him. That’s pretty standard Castroneves procedure to throw a big one in there at the end. I’m super happy to be on pole, and just really happy with how everything is going at Acura Team Penske. HPD has done a great job for us. We’re really coming on form when we need to as the back half of this championship, for the three races to go for us. It’s game-time to win the championship.”

Cameron and co-driver Juan Pablo Montoya enter Sunday’s race looking to extend their lead in the WeatherTech Championship DPi standings. They’re currently three points ahead (20-7-204) of No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R co-drivers Felipe Nasr and Pipo Derani. Cameron and Montoya also will be looking for their third victory of the season and their sixth consecutive podium result.

Castroneves – whose best lap was a 1:48.731 (134.025 mph) – and co-driver Ricky Taylor are currently third in the DPi standings, just nine points in arrears of their No. 6 teammates. They are still looking for their first victory of the season.

Oliver Jarvis led a Row 2 sweep for Mazda Team Joest, putting the No. 77 RT24-P DPi he shares with Tristan Nunez third on the grid with a best lap of 1:48.949 (133.757 mph). Jonathan Bomarito qualified fourth in the No. 55 Mazda DPi, posting a best lap of 1:49.381 (133.229 mph) in the car he will co-drive with Harry Tincknell. Mazda Team Joest is looking for its third consecutive victory in Sunday’s race after the No. 77 won the last DPi race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and the No. 55 won the previous event at Watkins Glen International.

Simon Trummer completed the top five with a best lap of 1:49.911 (132.586 mph) in the No. 84 JDC-Miller Motorsports Cadillac DPi-V.R. Trummer’s co-driver is Stephen Simpson. Derani wound up sixth on the grid at 1:50.111 (132.346 mph) in the No. 31 Cadillac.

In the LMP2 class, James French earned his 12th WeatherTech Championship Motul Pole Award with a best lap of 1:52.037 (130.070 mph) in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA. It’s a hometown race for French, who hails from nearby Sheboygan, Wisconsin, and he’ll go for the victory on Sunday with Canadian co-driver Cameron Cassels.

“It feels absolutely fantastic to be back here, especially in this car,” French said. “It’s super, super quick around here, and just tons of grip. The power is amazing. Amazing, beautiful circuit. The weather turned out to be pretty nice for us. It looked like it was going to rain and it didn’t. Luckily, it dried up for us and we were able to do some quick times. It was a blast.”

Source. IMSA/Photo. IMSA

BMW Team RLL Loses P1 and P3 Qualifying Positions at Road America Following Post-Qualifying Inspection

What was thought to be BMW Team RLL’s second best qualifying effort of the 2019 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season quickly turned to disappointment as both BMW M8 GTE racing cars were disqualified following the post-qualifying technical inspection. Both cars will start from the rear of the class.

Earlier in the day, Tom Blomqvist made the most of his first qualifying session at the classic Road America circuit, driving his No. 25 BMW M8 GTE to the GTLM class pole position for tomorrow’s two-hour-and-forty-minute IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Road Race Showcase. His 2:00.344 minute lap around the beautiful 4.0-mile, 14-turn road course was .319 seconds clear of the eight-car field. He will co-drive tomorrow with Connor De Phillippi. Jesse Krohn qualified the No. 24 BMW M8 GTE in the third position, posting a 2:00.767 minute lap, only .423 seconds behind his teammate. Krohn will share the No. 24 M8 with John Edwards.

DePhillippi, in sixth place, remains the top-standing BMW driver in GTLM Driver points. Edwards and Krohn stand seventh and Blomqvist, having missed the season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona, is ninth.

Source. BMW

MAZDA ON SECOND ROW IN QUALIFYING AT ROAD AMERICA

Saturday afternoon’s qualifying session for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Road America saw the Soul Red Crystal Mazda RT24-Ps lock out the second row of the field.

A brief rain shower delayed the start of Saturday afternoon’s 15-minute qualifying session, changing the ambient weather and track conditions just as the Daytona Prototype international field took to the track. Jonathan Bomarito was given qualifying duties in the No. 55 Mazda RT24-P, while Oliver Jarvis qualified the No. 77 Mazda RT24-P. Both drivers posted strong times in the opening laps of the session, which was then interrupted by a red flag for another car that needed to be pulled out of a gravel trap. Neither driver improved their time after the red flag, and Jarvis finished the session in third place while Bomarito finished in fourth.

This season, Jarvis has recorded pole positions at Daytona, Mid-Ohio and Watkins Glen.

QUOTES
John Doonan
Director, Mazda Motorsports
“Our goal this weekend is to continue the success that we have enjoyed over the last two races. That won’t be easy, with the level of competition that we have here in IMSA, but today was a good first step toward that with the two cars qualifying on the second row. The team and drivers got the most out of the Mazda RT24-Ps in qualifying but our focus is always to have a car that will perform well over the course of a stint and over the length of the race, not necessarily over a single flying lap. I’m really looking forward to seeing what tomorrow’s race brings.”

No. 55 Mazda RT24-P
Jonathan Bomarito
“Both cars have been making improvements all weekend and I feel like we’ve been making the car better and better – not necessarily for qualifying, but for the race. That’s the big picture here, and I feel pretty good about it. The rain we had right before the session cooled the track a bit, and we had a little bit more grip in qualifying. With light fuel and new tires it’s going to feel better naturally, but that little bit of rain cooled off the track and dried quickly which made the conditions pretty good. The Penskes have been really fast but starting third and fourth is great for Mazda and we are still really optimistic for our chances this weekend.”

No. 77 Mazda RT24-P
Oliver Jarvis
“I think we knew we were never going to beat the Penskes which had unbelievable pace all weekend, so third place is the maximum that I think we could achieve in qualifying. We’ve made big progress all weekend, so thanks to the team, now we just have to focus on the race. After the rain, the track got a lot more grip so that little bit of rain may have cooled the track down, but the field went considerably faster than they were in third practice. I was a little bit cautious in the last corner especially after we saw the GTLM cars go off but apart from that, the Mazda RT24-P was really solid. I think we have good race pace, tire degradation is going to play a key role, but more than anything I’m just loving being here at Road America and I’m looking forward to the race.”

Source. Mazda

Front row start for Paul Miller Racing at Road America

The Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini will start from the front row of the GT Daytona class pack after a strong performance in qualifying by Corey Lewis at Road America.

Lewis chased the GTD pack and the impending arrival of thunderstorms at the Elkhart Lake track to set a time of 2 minutes, 5.663 seconds around the 4.048-mile circuit in the 1st Phorm / Total Lubricants-sponsored Lamborghini.

The qualifying performance was the best effort to date for Paul Miller Racing in 2019 and the best ever result for Lewis who is stepping into the seat normally held by the injured Ryan Hardwick.

Today’s qualifying session was shortened by IMSA after lightning in the area.

While today’s action was disrupted by weather, Lewis and teammate Bryan Sellers are expected to enjoy clear skies and a dry track in tomorrow’s two-hour, 40-minute race.

“With the weather rolling in it was important to post a fast time early in the session – every lap of qualifying was critical and Corey did a really good job to grab a front-row start before the session was red-flagged,” Paul Miller Racing founder, Paul Miller said.

“We’ve had a disappointing couple of weeks but this team never gives in and a front-row start is a great reward for the effort the guys have put in over the past few weeks.

“But the job is only half done. The race results are the ones everyone remembers and Bryan, Corey and the entire team will be out to get the best result we can tomorrow.”

Corey Lewis
“Today was great. Timing was everything, when the red flag had fallen, we had just crossed the line. Starting second, front row start, it’ll be great for the race for tomorrow.
“Hats off to the whole Paul Miller team, they did an amazing job on the setup for qualifying for us.
“I’m really looking forward to tomorrow. We’ll see where we end up, but I’m hoping it’ll be on the podium!”

Source. Paul Miller Racing

Barbosa Unlucky in Qualifying, to Start Seventh at Road America

Mustang Sampling Racing driver Joao Barbosa gave it his all in qualifying to earn a spot on the fourth row of Sunday’s IMSA Road Race Showcase at Road America on Saturday.

The three-time Rolex 24 At Daytona winner made the most of what turned out to be his single fast flying lap after getting unlucky with a mid-session red flag. The 15-minute IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship DPi qualifying was initially delayed by lightning amidst threats of heavy rain. Then, a four-minute red flag midway through the session for a stopped LMP2 car negated Barbosa’s bid for a fast lap on the 14-turn, 4.048-mile circuit.

Barbosa’s best lap in the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Cadillac DPi-V.R was one minute, 50.783 seconds. He will be joined by Filipe Albuquerque in Sunday’s two-hour, 40-minute event, the eighth of 10 races on the DPi schedule.

“It was a shame we had a red flag on my second lap, which was right at the peak of the tires so we were a little unlucky there,” said Barbosa. “You always take that risk when you wait to go out—I had no traffic at all but we just got caught out a bit.”

The team has a strong record at the track, and will look to fight forward in the race to return to the Elkhart Lake podium.

“It was looking good on that second lap but it went red so we weren’t able to finish the lap,” said Barbosa. “I went back out for a run at the end and the car was feeling pretty good. I think we will see what we’ve got. Cadillac has had a long dry spell since they added weight to the car after Sebring. But this is a good race car and even though it will be hard with the extra weight, hopefully we will be able to catch up to the guys up front on a long run.”

Quick work by the circuit’s response team extricated the stranded car and enabled the session to go back to green, but Barbosa ran out of time on the longest circuit on the IMSA schedule.

“I went back out for a run at the end and the car was feeling pretty good,” Barbosa continued. “I think we will see what we’ve got. Cadillac has had a long dry spell, but this is a good race car. Hopefully, we will be able to catch up to the guys up front on a long run.”

Source. Sunday Group

Derani to Start Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac From Third Row at Road America

Looking to give Whelen Engineering Racing its third victory at Road America in five years, Pipo Derani qualified the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi V.R sixth for Sunday’s IMSA Road Racing Classic. The race is the eighth of ten on the 2019 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship calendar, and is a driver and fan favorite event.

Sunny and warm conditions greeted the teams and drivers as the field was set in a 15-minute qualifying session. Derani’s best lap in the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi co-driven by Felipe Nasr was one minute, 50.111 seconds, putting the familiar red-and-white car on the third row.

“I was pushing with everything I had,” said Derani. “We are just doing our jobs and unfortunately right now the best we can do is qualify sixth. It is not ideal because we are fighting for a championship. There is a big gap to the Acuras and Mazdas but it is just like this, and we will do the best that we can with what we have.”

Derani and Nasr are currently second in the DPi standings, only three points back with three races remaining. Whelen Engineering Racing won overall at Road America with a Corvette Daytona Prototype in 2015 and 2016.

“There are only three races remaining, and we can’t afford to make any mistakes from here,” Nasr said. “We are going to keep fighting for the championship. This is one of my favorite tracks on the calendar – Pipo’s, too!”

Source. Sunday Group

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