Countdown to Sebring is on
Countdown to Sebring is on
Team’s have completed their running at the Sebring test and now the countdown is on to the toughest race on the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship calendar – the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.
The historic airfield Florida circuit is a stunning test of man and machine and renowned as a car breaker – if you can survive 12 hours of Sebring over the bumps, you will be in good shape for the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Leading the GTLM battle throughout the two-day test was the No.25 BMW M6 of BMW Team RLL. The Bobby Rahal-run squad only brought one of their new machines to Florida for the test but were fastest throughout the four x four hour sessions – rotating Bill Auberlern, Dirk Werner, John Edwards, Lucas Luhr and Kuno Wittmer through the car.
The Risi Ferrari was second fastest on Friday afternoon ahead of the single Porsche of Fred Makowiecki and reigning GTLM champ, Patrick Pilet.
Ford continued to put their new GTLM through its paces – the only GTLM team running both cars. IndyCar aces Scott Dixon and Sebastien Bourdais were also on site to complete laps on day one before heading to the Phoenix IndyCar test.
For the overall times, it was last year’s Sebring pole winner Olivier Pla who dominated for Michael Shank Racing. The ex-Nissan LM P1 driver scored the pole here for Krohn Racing last year and was fast again yesterday to stop the clocks at 1:51.546.
While Christian Fittipaldi’s Action Express Daytona Prototype was fastest in the afternoon, Pla’s time from the morning session was the quickest of the two-day test.
“The track feels very different from last year, so we are trying different things setup wise,” Pla said.
“I don’t think there is anything we can extract from here last year, so we are working hard for the race. We’re making progress, and we’re happy with the test.
“Yesterday the car was a little hard to drive, so we made it a little bit more comfortable. We still have work to do, but we’re getting there.”
CORE autosport led Prototype Challenge (PC) for the second straight day, with the No. 54 ORECA FLM09 running a fast lap of 1:54.087.
Alessandro Balzan paced GT Daytona (GTD), running 2:01.342 in the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 co-driven by Christina Nielsen and Jeff Segal. GTD saw all 17 cars unofficially better ViperExchange.com Dodge Viper GT3-R driver Jeroen Bleekemolen’s year-old track record of 2:03.485 during the Friday morning session, with the top 14 cars within one second.
.@olivierpla took @MichaelShankRac to the top of the leaderboard in #Sebring12 test.
READ: https://t.co/6ACoD9i21b pic.twitter.com/eCmVuROa0h
— IMSA (@IMSA) February 26, 2016
.@MichaelShankRac Quickest at Sebring Test: https://t.co/MDb0Hg5FRv @OlivierPla #IMSA pic.twitter.com/TYJZC9amfF
— Sportscar365 (@sportscar365) February 26, 2016
2 great days of testing for our @mustangsampling @AX_Racing @TeamChevy
Sad not to drive but happy with the work done pic.twitter.com/d3lC16YCWz
— JoÃ£o Barbosa (@barbosaracing) February 27, 2016
Good night from America's greatest endurance racing tradition. See you March 19th for the 64th #Sebring12 pic.twitter.com/MB6MxxzIKt
— Sebring Raceway (@sebringraceway) February 25, 2016