- Ricky Taylor qualifies Acura ARX-05 prototype third overall, Dane Cameron fourth
- Alvaro Parente qualifies his Acura NSX GT3 fourth in tight GTD field
- Record-setting qualifying runs shatter existing marks
Lap records and extremely close qualifying times were the order of the day today at Watkins Glen International Raceway, as Acura entries qualified on the second row of both the Prototype and GTD fields in preparation for Sunday’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.
Acura Team Penske Prototype
Acura Team Penske’s Ricky Taylor and Dane Cameron locked out the second row of the starting field in a frantic 15-minute qualifying session that saw no fewer than 14 of the 16 prototypes shatter the existing track record around the 3.4-mile Watkins Glen road course.
Taylor led the way for Acura, qualifying his #7 Acura ARX-05 third overall, less than three-tenths of a second off the record pole time set by Colin Braun. Taylor and co-driver Helio Castroneves have been on a roll of late, finishing second earlier this month at the Detroit Grand Prix and leading a 1-2 Acura sweep at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in May.
Dane Cameron slotted the #6 Acura ARX-05 he shares with Juan Pablo Montoya into fourth on the starting grid, just over a tenth of a second behind his teammate. Cameron and Montoya also continue to build momentum as the 2018 season progresses, having finished third at Detroit and second at Mid-Ohio.
Acura NSX GT3 Teams
In GTD, the Meyer Shank Racing duo of Alvaro Parente and Lawson Aschenbach paced the Acura effort. Parente took his #86 NSX GT3 to fourth in class, with Aschenbach slotting the #93 Acura into fifth, a mere 0.036 seconds off his teammate’s time. Just four-tenths of a second separated the top six qualifiers in the ultra-competitive, 18-car GTD field.
Parente will start tomorrow’s six-hour endurance contest in the #86 he shares with Katherine Legge, while Aschenbach and Justin Marks will again share the driving duties in the patriotic liveried #93 Acura.
The third round of the series-within-a-series North American Endurance Championship, the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen also sees the return of Acura NSX GT3s fielded by C.J. Wilson Racing and the Honda associate-operated Honda of America Racing Team. Tom Dyer recorded the 12th-fastest time aboard the #69 HART entry that he will share with Ryan Eversley and Chad Gilsinger. In the #36 C.J. Wilson NSX, Till Bechtolsheimer qualified 17th and will split driving duties tomorrow with veteran Marc Miller.
Ricky Taylor (driver, #7 Acura Team Penske ARX-05) qualified third: “I think we gave it our maximum today. Third is probably the best we could’ve done. The important thing is we have a long, six-hour race tomorrow and we’re starting ahead of our championship rivals. We’ve had a really good streak of momentum these last two weekends [Mid-Ohio and Detroit]. Hopefully, we can keep building on that to chip away at the championship points lead.”
Where to watch the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen
The Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen starts at 9:30 a.m. EDT Sunday, July 1, with live television coverage on Fox Sports 1 and the Fox Sports Go app.
Fans can listen in to audio commentary via IMSA.com, RadioLeMans.com and Sirius XM Radio; and follow the race live via in-car cameras, IMSA Radio and timing & scoring available worldwide on IMSA.com and the IMSA mobile device App.
Video recaps from this weekend’s Acura racing activities at Watkins Glen will be posted on the “Honda Racing/HPD” YouTube channel. Produced by the Carolinas Production Group, the video packages can be found in the 2017 HPD Trackside Video Playlist at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV.
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
Circuit: Watkins Glen International Raceway (3.4-mile road course) Watkins Glen, NY
Weather: Sunny, hot, 87 degrees F
|Top-6 Prototype Qualifying Results:|
|1.||Prototype||Colin Braun / Jonathan Bennett / Romain Dumas||CORE Autosport||ORECA 07 Gibson||1:32.350 [new record]|
|2.||Prototype||Paul Di Resta / Bruno Senna / Phil Hanson||United Autosports||Ligier JSP 217 Gibson||+0.006 second|
|3.||Prototype||Ricky Taylor / Helio Castroneves||Acura Team Penske||Acura ARX-05||1:32.638|
|4.||Prototype||Dane Cameron/Juan Pablo Montoya||Acura Team Penske||Acura ARX-05||1:32.782|
|5.||Prototype||Simon Trummer / Robert Alon / Nelson Panciatici||JDC Miller Motorsports||ORECA 07 Gibson||1:33.016|
|6.||Prototype||Pipo Derani / Johannes von Overbeek / Nicholas Lapierre||Tequila Patron ESM||Ligier JSP217 Nissan||1:33.092|
|Top-6 GTD Qualifying Results:|
|1.||GTD||Jack Hawksworth / David H. Hansson / Mario Farnbacher||3 GT Racing||Lexus RC F GT3||1:44.499|
|2.||GTD||Chris Mies / Sheldon van der Linde||Land Motorsport||Audi R8 LMS GT3||+0.112 seconds|
|3.||GTD||Kyle Marcelli / Dominik Baumann||3 GT Racing||Lexus RC F GT3||1:44.712|
|4.||GTD||Alvaro Parente / Katherine Legge||Meyer Shank Racing||Acura NSX GT3||1:44.742|
|5.||GTD||Lawson Aschenbach / Justin Marks||Meyer Shank Racing||Acura NSX GT3||1:44.778|
|6.||GTD||Jeff Segal / Cooper MacNeil / Gunnar Jeannette||Scuderia Corsa||Ferrari 488 GT3||1:44.812|
|12.||GTD||Tom Dyer / Ryan Eversley / Chad Gilsinger||Honda of AmericaRacing Team||Acura NSX GT3|
|17.||GTD||Till Bechtolsheimer / Marc Miller||C.J. Wilson Racing||Acura NSX GT3|
|*Qualifying driver in italics|