Albuquerque tops first Rolex 24 At Daytona practice; GTD polesitter crashes

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Albuquerque tops first Rolex 24 At Daytona practice; GTD polesitter crashes


Albuquerque tops first Rolex 24 At Daytona practice; GTD polesitter crashes


Filipe Albuquerque set the fastest time in Thursday’s first practice session for the Rolex 24 aA Daytona with a 1m35.366s lap, putting the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Acura on top for the first time after Meyer Shank Racing dominated the Roar Before the 24 Sessions.

The session was interrupted by several red flags, the most serious incident occurring when the No. 57 Winward Racing Mercedes-AMG hit the wall head-on in Turn 2 after Lucas Auer put the right-side tires in the dirt. Shortly after setting the fastest lap of the session, Auer crashed the GTD polesitting car with 25 minutes left on the clock. Extracting Auer from the car through the removable roof panel and recovering the car took more than 20 minutes, with the session going green with about five minutes left. He was transported to a local hospital for evaluation, and the car sustained heavy damage in the incident.

In addition to other stops for debris, the GTD No. 92 Kellymoss with Riley Porsche stopped on course, the GTD PRO No. 63 Iron Lynx Lamborghini parked on the circuit, and LMP3 competitor John De Angelis had mild contact to the wall exiting the Bus Stop in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports Ligier.

Earl Bamber was second-quickest in GTP in the No. 02 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac at 1m35.632s, just ahead of Tom Blomqvist in the No. 60 MSR Acura by 0.033s. Renger van der Zande (No. 01 CGR Cadillac) and Mathieu Jaminet (No. 6 PPM Porsche) completed the top five. The No. 7 Porsche Penske Motorsports 963 missed much of the session with a brake issue, as did the No. 25 BMW M Team RLL M Hybrid V8 with an unidentified problem.

The GTD polesitting No.57: Winward Racing Mercedes AMG GT3 took a heavy hit at Turn 2 with Lucas Auer at the wheel. Jake Galstad/Motorsport Images

Paul-Loup Chatin set the mark for LMP2 with a 1m38.302 in the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA, followed by Oliver Jarvis in the No. 18 Era Motorsport car and Mikkel Jensen in the No. 11 TDS Racing ORECA.

Riley Motorsports was on top in LMP3, Felipe Fraga setting the top time of 1m42.704s in the No. 74 Ligier. Gabby Chaves was second in the No. 36 Andretti Autosport Ligier, followed by Joao Barbosa in the No. 33 Sean Creech Motorsports Ligier.

Auer was the quickest of all the GT runners before his accident at 1m46.763s. Aaron Telitz was 0.212s off that time in the No. 12 Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F. Trailing GTD PRO leader Owen Trinkler, Spencer Pumpelly was third in the No. 44 Magnus Racing Aston Martin Vantage. Brendan Iribe (No. 70 Inception Racing McLaren 720S) and Kyle Marcelli (No. 93 Racers Edge with WTR Acura NSX Evo22) completed the top five in GTD.

Trinkler posted the best GTD PRO time in the No. 64 TGM/TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage that led many of the sessions at the Roar last weekend, posting a 1m47.010s lap. The No. 14 Vasser Sullivan Lexus was second – fifth GT car overall – in the hands of Jack Hawksworth, 0.164s off Trinkler’s time. Ross Gunn put the No. 23 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage in third with a 1m47.468s lap. Despite its issues that left it parked on circuit, the No, 63 Iron Lynx Lamborghini in the hands of Andrea Caldarelli was fourth, and Daniel Serra in the No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 296 completed the top five.


UP NEXT: A 1h45m session split into two parts, giving the LMP2, LMP3 and GTD cars 15 minutes on their own at the beginning and GTP and GTD PRO having their 15 minutes at the end, beginning at 3:20 p.m. ET.