Helio Castroneves led the final IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship practice on Saturday for the Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio.
The 45-year-old Brazilian dropped the hammer as the final minutes ticked down in the session and put down a flying lap at 1m11.395s in the No. 7 Acura Team Penske DPi. Championship leader Renger van der Zande held the top spot for the majority of practice in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac, but his best lap ended up short by just 0.192s.
After Juan Pablo Montoya led Friday’s practice, it was co-driver Dane Cameron’s turn as he pushed the No. 6 Acura Team Penske to third overall at 1m11.645s. While the top three were within 0.25s of each other, the gap to fourth was considerably more sizable. Despite his best efforts, Pipo Derani was off the leader’s pace by 0.5s in the No. 31 Action Express Whelen Engineering Cadillac DPi-V.R.
Jordan Taylor went quickest in GTLM, with his No. 3 Corvette Racing C8.R navigating 13-turn, 2.258-mile permanent road course at 1m18.668s. The No. 4 sister car followed with Oliver Gavin off the mark by 0.26s.
The opening 15 minutes of the session belonged to GTD, with the lower rated drivers getting the track all to themselves. It proved to be a sparring match for the top spot, but in the end it was Aaron Telitz getting the best of the class after a lap of 1m20.465s in the No. 14 Lexus RC F GT3 for AIM Vasser Sullivan. Behind Telitz was teammate Frankie Montalvo in the No. 12 sister car, who was 0.289s behind.
There were no incidents in the session, but a drive-through penalty was served to Montoya after race control deemed he exceeded the pit road speed limit.
UP NEXT: Qualifying will commence Sunday at 8 a.m. ET and will be streamed live on IMSA.com. Live coverage of the 2h40m race will follow that afternoon at 2:05 p.m. on NBC Sports Gold, with the replay airing at 11 p.m. on NBCSN.