Roar Before the 24 session four dominated again by MSR Acura

Jake Galstad/Lumen

Roar Before the 24 session four dominated again by MSR Acura


Roar Before the 24 session four dominated again by MSR Acura


The Roar Before the 24 GTP times for the penultimate session – and possibly last dry outing – before qualifying remained divided by manufacturer, although the BMWs moved from the bottom to second behind – once again – the Acuras.

As they have done through four test sessions so far during the test for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Meyer Shank Racing put their No. 60 ARX-06 on top, Colin Braun turning a fast lap of 1m35.038s. Wayne Taylor Racing again followed, Brendan Hartley the quickest of the WTR drivers at 1m25.136. Philipp Eng led the two BMW M Team RLL BMW M Hybrid V8s with a 1m35.372s lap in the No. 24, followed by Nick Yelloly in the No. 25 and the first of the two Porsche 963s, Michael Christensen the quickest of the Porsche Penske Motorsport drivers. The three Cadillac entries brought up the rear.

“Obviously really proud of the team,” said Braun. “I know everyone says it, but I think more than ever, in this year of GTP cars, it’s such a big effort by the Meyer Shank team, by the HPD and Acura guys. It’s been a lot of work over the offseason throughout the tests. Each time we’ve run the car it’s been a big step forward in terms of development. It’s been leaps and bounds better and better and better and really I’m pretty darn happy with the car right now.”

MSR’s newest driver had no real explanation that he could share regarding why MSR has been so strong out of the box and stayed that way through the Roar so far as they go into Sunday the clear favorites to claim the pole position for next weekend’s Rolex 24 at Daytona.

“We’ve been working together as a group throughout this whole process. It’s been really nice integrating with those guys on the HPD and Honda side. It’s been a big help both ways. I don’t think we’re doing anything crazy. We’re just again focused on kind of what our run plan is, getting laps. Simon (Pagenaud) and Helio (Castroneves) haven’t had a ton of laps in the car, or even myself. So, for us, we’re more focused on just checking the boxes and working through things. We’re just heads down and and focused on what we can control,” he said.

Ben Hanley put the No. 04 Crowdstrike Racing by APR ORECA on top of LMP2 for the first time during the weekend with a 1m38.633s lap. Rinus Veekay followed 0.670s slower in the No. 11 TDS Racing ORECA, and Kyffin Simpson was third in the No. 8 Tower Motorsports car. Nico Pino topped LMP3 with a 1m42.961s lap in the No. 33 Sean Creech Motorsport Ligier, with Gabby Chaves (No. 36 Andretti Autosport Ligier) and Josh Burdon (No. 74 Riley Motorsports Ligier) following.

It was Aston Martins again at the top of GTD and GTD PRO, Nikki Thiim claiming top honors among the GT field in the GTD-class No. 44 Magnus Racing Vantage GT3. Hugh Plumb missed the overall top GT time by 0.033s, putting the No. 64 TGM/TF Sport Vantage on top of GTD PRO with a 1m47.309s lap.

Maximilian Goetz was second in GTD, 0.039s shy of Thiim in the No. 32 Team Korthoff Motorsports Mercedes-AMG, then Aaron Telitz (No. 12 Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3), Russell Ward (No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG) and Kenny Habul (No. 75 SunEnergy1 Racing Mercedes-AMG).

Jack Hawksworth trailed Plumb by 0.131s to take the second-best time in GTD PRO driving the No. 14 Vasser Sullivan Lexus. David Pittard (No. 23 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage), Tommy Milner (No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette) and Jordan Pepper (No. 63 Iron Lynx Lamborghini Huracan) rounded out the top five in GTD PRO.


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