Taylor tops first practice WTR Acura

Cadillac DPi-V.Rs dominated early racing in first practice for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for the penultimate round of the 2022 prototype class.

Earl Bamber in entry #02 Chip Ganassi Racing was the first driver to reach the 1min50s, clocking 1 minute 50.835sec ahead of Pipo Derani in the Action Express Racing car, then Sebastien Bourdais in the #01 Ganassi.

With 50 minutes left of the 90-minute session remaining, Tom Blomqvist interrupted the Cadillac 1-2-3 by putting a Meyer Shank Racing Acura ARX-05 in third, 0.22 seconds off the top time before swinging.

High Class Racing’s Dennis Andersen was disconcerting, seeing the LMP2 Oreca fly off the track in Turn 11, requiring at least a fresh nose. This resulted in a red flag, but flying green with 27 minutes remaining had all the DPi cars head out.

Seven minutes later, Ricky Taylor was on his way – and found a relatively clear lap – to send Wayne Taylor Racing Acura into second, 0.177 seconds behind Bamber’s benchmark and then convincingly moved to the top by 1 minute 50.539 seconds – nearly three-tenths faster than the nearest opponent.

He wouldn’t lose his time, so Bamber/Alex Lane and Derani/Olivier Pla remained in second and third, ahead of Mayer Shank’s Acura, Cadillac Purdis No.01/Ranger van der Zande. Tristan Vautier set the fastest time for JDC Miller MotorSports Cadillac but was about 1.5 seconds slower than Taylor.

In GTD Pro, Vasser Sullivan Racing’s #14 Lexus RC F held the fastest time with Ben Barnicoat at the wheel, 2 minutes 06.971sec, but in the hands of teammate Jack Hawksworth the car stalled on the track at Turn 12 and needed a rescue in 40 minutes stay.

The closest at that point was Matt Campbell in a Pfaff Porsche 911 GT3 R, 0.15sec behind, directly ahead of the leader in the Pro GTD class, local champ Aaron Telitz in the second Lexus he shares with Frankie Montecalvo.

With 17 minutes left, Robbie Foley then outpaced all GTD Pro and GTD runners in Turner Motorsports’ BMW M4 by 2:06920, with the fastest times in Sector 2 – which is 73 seconds at GTD pace – and Sector 3.

Montecalvo wouldn’t have taken that lie, sure enough to take the lead by more than a quarter of a second from Foley.

But he stayed on top for about a minute before Jaden Conwright’s NTE/SSR Lamborghini moved into P1, then Carbahn Peregrine Racing’s Lambo car driven by Robert Meganis shadowed Conwright by just 0.071sec.

Conor De Filippe in the BMW M4 works eventually shaded Foley’s best effort by 0.28 seconds to score faster than the GTD Pro racers, while Antonio Garcia in his Corvette C8.R moved up to third in his class, behind Barnicott earlier, and ahead of him. Pfaff Porsche.

In LMP2, Ryan Dalziel was fastest at Era Motorsport ahead of Tristan Nunez, who returned to PR1 Mathiasen Motorsport to replace Jonathan Pommarito in the #11 car.

Juan Pablo Montoya was third on the DragonSpeed ‚Äč‚Äčlist, ahead of Luis Deletraz in Tower Motorsports and second entry for PR1 Matthiasen by Josh Pearson.

Malthe Jakobsen’s Sean Creech Motorsport LMP3 car led despite two crashes, three-tenths faster than Riley Motorsports driver Felipe Fraga and Scott Andrews in the JDC Miller Motorsports machine.

The second practice begins at 3.15 p.m. local (central) time.

Full practice times to follow…

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