Honda driver Pipo Derani passed Joao Barbosa for the lead one minute prior to the three-hour mark of the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen, giving the No. 2 Tequila Patrón ESM Honda Ligier JS P2 a five-point bonus towards the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup.
Entering the race tied for the lead in the completion among the four classic endurance races on the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Tequila Patrón ESM now holds a one-point lead over Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi in the No. 5 Action Express Racing Mustang Sampling Corvette DP, 31-30.
“We lost a lot of positions at our driver change, and I was happy that we were able to recover all the positions,” said Derani, racing for the first time at Watkins Glen International. “We still have half of the race to go, and hopefully we can fight for the win.”
The Patrón Endurance Cup began with the Rolex 24 At Daytona and Mobil One 12 Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida, and concludes with Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in October. While Tequila Patrón ESM won both of the Florida classics, Action Express Racing won enough mid-race segments to share the lead. Points are awarded at the end of each segment with five points for first; four points for second; three for third; and two for all other competitors.
BMW’s Bill Auberlen led a pair of Ford GTs in the GT Le Mans (GTLM) category. Auberlen and No. 25 IHG Rewards Club BMW M6 GTLM co-driver Dirk Werner move up to fourth as a result of the bonus, closing to within three points of leaders Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner, who were running sixth at the midway point in the No. 4 Corvette Racing Corvette C7.R.
In GT Daytona (GTD), Matt Bell led in the No. 9 Stevenson Motorsports Audi R8 LMS co-driven by Lawson Aschenbach. Alex Riberas was running second in the No. 23 Alex Job Racing Team Seattle/Heart of Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R, allowing Riberas and co-driver Mario Farnbacher to break a tie and take a two-point lead in the class, 25-23.
Kenton Koch led Prototype Challenge (PC) in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA FLM09 co-driven by Kyle Marcelli and James French. While the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports team of Robert Alon, Tom Kimber-Smith and Jose Gutierrez have been experiencing mechanical problems, they still hold a two-point lead over No. 85 JDC-Miller Motorsports drivers Misha Goikhberg, Stephen Simpson and Chris Miller in the team standings, 30-27. Since Koch drove for JDC-Miller Motorsports in the opening two races, he is tied with the PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports competitors in the driver standings.
Patrón Endurance Cup points also will be awarded at the finish of the Sahlen’s Six Hours.
- Entering the race with a one-point lead in the Prototype Engine Manufacturers standings, Honda’s lead at the three-hour mark extends that advantage to two points over Chevrolet, 37-35.
- Ryan Briscoe participated in the morning warm-up session, his first time on track in the No. 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT this weekend. Co-driver Richard Westbrook drove all of the practice sessions and qualifying in the car so that Briscoe could be back home with his wife, Nicole, to witness the birth of their second daughter.
- The No. 20 BAR1 Motorsports ORECA FLM09 retired from the race only 33 minutes into the event when Johnny Mowlem snapped to the right near the end of the back straight after light contact with James French in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports PC, shredding much of the car’s bodywork in the process. Mowlem was uninjured in the incident.
- Stevenson Motorsports is having an up-and-down weekend with its No. 6 Stevenson Automotive Group Audi R8 LMS GT3. Robin Liddell led GTD qualifying, only to have to start at the back of the grid due to a technical infraction. Liddell worked his way through the pack, needing only one hour, nine minutes to capture the lead. He led 19 laps before receiving damage on-track and heading back to the pits. Andrew Davis took over and was running 10th at the three-hour mark.
- Two of the 41 entrants did not make the start. The No. 27 Dream Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3 of Lawrence DeGeorge, Cedric Sbirrazzuoli and Luca Persiani sustained major damage in a crash during Friday’s practice. The crew of the No. 50 Highway to Help/Fifty Plus Racing BMW Riley DP driven by Jim Pace, Dorsey Schroeder and Byron DeFoor discovered a mechanical problem prior to the Sunday morning warm-up and the car failed to start.
- The Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen is currently being televised on FS1, in addition to being streamed live on the FOX Sports GO app.