Looking to extend Porsche GT Team’s five-race winning streak in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTLM competition, Nick Tandy set the fastest time in Friday morning’s opening practice at Lime Rock Park for Saturday’s Northeast Grand Prix.
Tandy ran a fast lap of 50.065s in the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR in the extended 75-minute, incident-free GTLM session. Tandy and co-driver Patrick Pilet won the most recent race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, after opening the streak with back-to-back triumphs at Long Beach and Mid-Ohio.
“I just drove two laps at the beginning,” Pilet said. “It seems to be OK, but it’s a bit early to have conclusions. The track is in good shape, because the lap time is super quick. It’s very hot, and we have to figure out the setup for the long run now. We’re trying to get the sixth win in a row here, and this is a super track — I love it!”
Following last night’s public introduction of the Corvette C8, Marcel Fassler and Oliver Gavin would like a strong send-off for the venerable C7.R. Fassler was second in the No. 4 Corvette Racing entry, at 50.398s, for a Corvette Racing team still without a victory in 2019 IMSA competition.
Third was Connor DePhillippi in the No. 25 Team RLL BMW M8 GTLM, with a 40.416s, followed by Jan Magnussen, at 50.553s in the No. 3 Corvette, and Richard Westbrook in the No. 67 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT, 50.545s.
The eight GTLM entries had 15 minutes of solo track time, followed by one hour of shared time with the GT Daytona competitors. GTD competitors then had an additional 15 minutes reserved for Bronze- or Silver-rated drivers.
Championship leader Mario Farnbacher was fastest in GTD, running 51.813s in the No. 86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX GT3. Jeroen Bleekemolen was second, at 51.886s in the No. 33 Wynns Riley Motorsports Mercedes-AMG GT3, and Bryan Sellers third with a 51.912s in the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan GT3.
UP NEXT: Practice 2, a one-hour session for the GTLM/GTD classes, begins at 1:55 p.m. ET, followed at 4:55 p.m. with the third session.
Saturday begins with a 20-minute warm-up at 9:05 a.m. Qualifying is set for 9:35 a.m. (GTD) and 10 a.m. (GTLM). The two-hour, 40-minute race starts at 2:40 p.m.