Hot Day, Fast Friday in Lime Rock

July 19, 2019

Hot Day, Fast Friday in Lime Rock

July 19, 2019

With ambient temperatures well north of 90 degrees and track temperatures pushing 120, and consistently over 110, Friday at Lime Rock Park was a hot one.

The lap times were hot too, with IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GT Le Mans class competitors breaking into the 49-second barrier by the third and final practice session of the day.

First Laurens Vanthoor, then Nick Tandy in the two Porsche 911 RSRs dipped into the 49-second bracket at the 1.474-mile circuit. Tandy’s 49.782-second lap is within the same tenth as Antonio Garcia’s 2018 pole time (49.754), which could indicate a potential of a mid-49-second lap in Saturday morning qualifying.

Eight tenths of a second covered the eight GTLM cars through three practice sessions held Friday. Porsche seeks its sixth straight class win while all of Corvette, Ford and BMW will be nipping at their heels. All the GTLM cars use Michelin’s proprietary range of confidential tires and often try to “mix-and-match” at Lime Rock. This track has six right-hand corners and only one left-hander.

TURNER BMW ATOP JUMBLED GTD FIELD

In GT Daytona, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park winners Turner Motorsport topped the charts with Bill Auberlen and Robby Foley in the No. 96 BMW M6 GT3. A best time of 51.715 seconds in the second session edged Bryan Sellers’ third session best time of 51.797 in the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo.

Sellers has a new co-driver this weekend with Corey Lewis substituting for the injured Ryan Hardwick. This is one of four GTD team fielding different lineups, with all three Porsches having a slightly altered lineup this race.

On Saturday, WeatherTech Championship competitors have morning warm-up, qualifying, an autograph session and then the Northeast Grand Prix itself. The race is live via the NBC Sports App at 3 p.m. EDT, and airs on NBCSN at 9:30 p.m. EDT.

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