Pla, Mazda lead second Sebring practice

Image by Scott LePage/LAT

Pla, Mazda lead second Sebring practice


Pla, Mazda lead second Sebring practice


Olivier Pla brought Mazda Team Joest to the top of the charts in Thursday’s second IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

One lap after setting the fastest lap of the day, a 1m46.834s, Pla ran out of gas in the No. 55 Mazda RT-24P and needed a tow, bringing out a short red-flag period.

“That was a very positive session for our team,” Pla said. “The Mazda RT-24P is working very well around Sebring, and with the heat we have in the middle of the day, it gives us confidence for the race. I think the car can be competitive here. Of course it is a long race, but we are confident in the pace of the car.”

Pipo Derani was second in the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R at 1m47.649s, slightly slower than co-driver Felipe Nasr’s lap of 1m46.996s that led the morning session. Jordan Taylor was third, at 1m47.651s in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R, followed by Helio Castroneves, 1m47.989s in the No. 7 Team Penske Acura DPi.

Nick Tandy was fast in GTLM, at 1m56.991s in the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR, followed by Ryan Briscoe’s 1m57.406s in the No. 67 Ford, and Philipp Eng, at 1m57.507s in the No. 24 BMW Team RLL BMW M8 GTE.

In GT Daytona, Bill Auberlen’s early lap of 2m0.583s led the session in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3. He was followed by Mirko Bortolotti at 2m0.913s in the No. 11 GRT Grasser Team Biocircle Lamborghini Huracan GT3, and Scott Hargrove, with a 2m1.292s in the No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.

Matt McMurry led LMP2, at 1m52.579s in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA Gibson.

There was a 12-minute red flag stoppage beginning at the five-minute mark for a front-end impact into the Turn 3 tire barrier by Don Yount in the No. 47 Precision Performance Motorsports Lamborghini Huracan GT3.


UP NEXT: Today’s activities conclude with a 90-minute night session beginning at 7:45 p.m. (all times ET).

Friday opens with a one-hour, 25-minute combined session at 8 a.m., shortly followed by 15-minute qualifying groups beginning at 10:20 a.m. There will be a 20-minute warm-up on Saturday morning at 8 a.m., with the 67th annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring beginning at 10:40 a.m.