Scott Dixon leads afternoon practice at Sonoma

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Scott Dixon led today’s second practice session for the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma (Sun., 4 p.m. ET, NBCSN), turning in the fastest lap of the day overall with a time of 1 minute, 18.3145 seconds around the hilly 2.4-mile road course.

After checking out the Sonoma circuit, Dixon, who trails IZOD IndyCar Series championship leader Helio Castroneves by 31 points going into this weekend, believes that it’ll be a tough go-round for himself and the rest of the field.

“A lot of that may be the tires – I think Firestone always has a great product, but maybe the tires just don’t match here that well,” said the two-time series champion.

“It’s definitely making it interesting. In the first [practice] session, you kind of get two or three laps to get it together, and I didn’t get it together whatsoever…I don’t know, it’s really about getting your laps together and making sure you get the most out of the first sort of three laps, and I think as the race goes on, it’s going to make a really interesting race on these roads.”

Castroneves was second-fastest both in the afternoon and overall, logging a time of 1 minute, 18.6694 seconds. Ryan Hunter-Reay’s lap that topped the Friday morning session (1 minute, 18.6814 seconds) was good enough to stand third overall, followed by Will Power in fourth (1 minute, 18.7454 seconds; afternoon) and Dario Franchitti in fifth (1 minute, 18.8124 seconds; morning).

Saturday will see a third practice session at 2 p.m. ET, followed by three rounds of ‘knockout’ qualifying starting at 5:30 p.m. ET. NBCSN will air the qualifying session later on at 9 p.m. ET.

BMW confirms IMSA, WEC GTE line-ups for 2018

BMW Motorsport
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BMW has confirmed its driver line-ups for the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship campaigns.

In an announcement made at its end-of-year Sports Trophy event on Friday night, BMW firmed up its roster across its factory WEC team and its customer RLL Racing IMSA squad.

Two of the 2018 BMW M8 GTEs will enter the WEC next year, joining a hotly-contested GTE-Pro class that already features Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin and Ford.

BMW factory drivers Antonio Felix da Costa, Nick Catsburg, Augusto Farfus and Martin Tomczyk will share the two cars across the 13-month ‘super season’.

The quartet will be joined by Tom Blomqvist, Alexander Sims and Philipp Eng for the 24 Hours of Le Mans

In IMSA, the RLL Racing team will once again field Sims and John Edwards, who will be joined by the incoming Connor De Phillippi and Jesse Krohn.

BMW also confirmed on Friday night that Tom Blomqvist would see out the Formula E season with its Andretti-affiliated team, having been benched for Kamui Kobayashi in Hong Kong.