Scott Maxwell mastered a drying track to capture a record-tying 12th career TOTAL Pole Award to lead Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge qualifying for Saturday’s Continental Tire 150. The Canadian broke the track record in the Grand Sport (GS) class on his final lap, running 2:00.514 (101.5 mph) in the No. 15 Multimatic Motorsports Ford Shelby GT350R-C co-driven by Billy Johnson.
“We had a clear lane at the beginning of the session, but during the first two or three laps you still had to be careful not to hit the water,” said Maxwell after winning his second pole of the season. “Over the 15 minutes that lane widened, allowing you to take more liberties and be aggressive. Then at the end, it was ‘go for it,’ because the other guys were setting fast times. Today, it all worked out for us, even though I thought we’d wind up P2 because of the rain.”
Danny Burkett qualified second, running 2:00.598 (101.4 mph) in the No. 33 CJ Wilson Racing ONE Capital Management/MotorOilMatters.org Porsche GT4 Clubsport co-driven by Marc Miller. Charles Espenlaub was third in the No. 09 Automatic Racing Invisible Glass/Rogue Engineering/Red Glare Aston Martin Vantage, 2:02.328 (100.0 mph), followed by Till Bechtolscheimer in the No. 35 CJ Wilson Racing Safecraft/New Balance Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport, 2:02.378 (100.0 mph).
MINI Sweeps Front Row In ST
The MINI John Cooper Works team swept the front row in ST qualifying, with Derek Jones capturing his first career TOTAL Pole Award while giving the MINI JCW its first pole position.
With the track drying during the session after a brief rainfall earlier in the afternoon, the top spot changed five times in the closing minutes before Jones ran his best lap of 2:19.332 (87.8 mph) to lead the 15-minute session in the No. 73 Shopminiusa.com/ATELIER MINI JCW co-driven by Mat Pombo. Moments later, James Vance took second, running 2:19.498 (87.7 mph) in the No. 52 MINI co-driven by Ramin Abdolvahabi.
“It was raining at the start, but then it began drying,” Jones said. “I held back to cool off my tires, and then I did a flying lap, dropping my best time by three seconds. The front-wheel-drive MINI was amazing in the rain. It’s a well-balanced car, and the team is definitely getting it tuned in.”
Current ST points leader Chad Gilsinger will start third with a best lap of 2:19.807 after leading much of the session in the No. 93 HART Honda Civic Si co-driven by Ryan Eversley.
- Robin Liddell will have two chances this weekend to continue a personal four-race winning streak at The Glen. He will run in the ST class of the Continental Tire 150 in the No. 8 Rebel Rock Racing Borla/Urban Grid Porsche Cayman, and then will join Andrew Davis in the No. 6 Stevenson Auto Group Audi R8 LMS GT3 for the Sahlen’s Six Hours.
“Obviously, the Sahlen’s Six Hours and Continental Tire Challenge are different animals, but to be honest, the competition in both races is huge,” Liddell said. “ST is very tough. There are a lot of quick cars out there.”
The Continental Tire 150 takes the green flag at 12:25 p.m. for two and a half hours of racing. The event will be streamed live on the FOX Sports GO app and IMSA.tv. It will be followed by WeatherTech Championship qualifying for the Sahlen’s Six Hours, beginning at 3:40 p.m. ET on IMSA.tv.