GP2: Vandoorne storms to home pole position at Spa

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Stoffel Vandoorne continued his relentless streak at the head of the GP2 Series field by securing pole position for his home race in Belgium this weekend.

Vandoorne entered the weekend leading the series by 85 points after a remarkable run of form in the opening six rounds, scoring four wins and five further podium finishes.

A Belgian driver has never won a GP2 race at their home event at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, but Vandoorne has given himself a golden opportunity to do exactly that by scoring pole on Friday.

The ART Grand Prix driver dominated proceedings throughout the session, with his best lap of 1:56.278 being enough to give him a fourth pole position of the year.

“I was on pole here last year so to be on pole here again this year is a pretty good feeling,” Vandoorne said.

“It’s a special race for me in front of my home fans. Last year I came pretty close to victory. I finished P2 so tomorrow we will have to do a little bit better than last year.”

Vandoorne will be joined on the front row of the grid by Oliver Rowland, who will take part in just his third GP2 race this weekend with MP Motorsport. The Briton fell 0.147 seconds short of Vandoorne at the front, and felt that he could have taken a shock pole.

“I missed a tenth I think and I made a couple of mistakes,” Rowland said. “I’m not a hundred per cent sure what ART did but they did only one lap on the second run and I said to my team that there was no point to do two.

“I thought maybe we should save the fuel and just do one push lap. But they preferred to stick with the plan. I made a slight mistake in the first sector. So that together, means P2 today.”

Silverstone winner Sergey Sirotkin ran well to finish third ahead of Racing Engineering’s Jordan King and ART’s Nobuharu Matsushita, whilst Mitch Evans and Pierre Gasly qualified sixth and seventh.

American driver Alexander Rossi struggled to put up much of a fight at the front of the field, qualifying eighth. Alex Lynn and Norman Nato rounded out the top ten.

To see the full classification from qualifying at Spa, click here.

IMSA at Mid-Ohio Sunday: How to watch, schedules, TV, stream info

IMSA Mid-Ohio schedule
IMSA
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The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship returns to a sprint as the circuit enters the stretch run of the 2020 season with a packed weekend schedule at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The Acura Sports Car Challenge will be a two-hour, 40-minute race around the 13-turn, 2.258-mile road course in Lexington, Ohio, for the DPi, GTLM and GTD classes.

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar teams will practice Friday and Saturday. Qualifying will take place at 8 a.m. Sunday before a 2 p.m. green flag (same-day delay 11 p.m. ET, NBCSN; streaming on NBC Sports App, NBCSports.com and TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold) for the headlining race of a busy weekend.

There will be eight other races at Mid-Ohio across four series: the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge, IMSA Prototype Challenge, Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama and the Battery Tender Global Mazda MX-5 Cup.

The GTLM class of IMSA’s top series will be short two entries with Porsche pulling out because of positive COVID-19 tests at the 24 Hours of Le Mans last weekend.

This will mark the seventh race of the season. After Mid-Ohio, there are three events left for the premier DPi and four for the GT division, including two of the year’s longest (the 10-hour Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta and the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring season finale).

Here are the details for IMSA this weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (all times are ET):


IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race at Mid-Ohio

WHEN: Sunday, 2 p.m.

TV:  11 p.m. (same-day delay), NBCSN (streaming link); 2 p.m. NBC Sports App (streaming link) / TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold

STREAM: NBC Sports App, NBCSports.com and TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold (live flag to flag starting at 2 p.m.)

RADIO: IMSA Radio will have live radio coverage throughout the weekend on IMSA.com and RadioLeMans.com, as well as SiriusXM

RACE DISTANCE: Two hours and 40 minutes around the 13-turn, 2.258-mile road course in Lexington, Ohio.

FORECAST: According to Wunderground.com, it’s expected to be 81 degrees with a 1% chance of rain at the green flag.

ENTRY LIST: Click here for which WeatherTech SportsCar Championship teams are racing at Mid-Ohio


IMSA Mid-Ohio weekend schedule

Friday

6:10-7:10 p.m. — WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

Saturday

10:55 a.m.-12:10 p.m. — WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

Sunday

8-9:05 a.m. — WeatherTech SportsCar Championship qualifying

2 p.m. — WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Acura Sports Car Challenge