IMSA releases entry list for iRacing at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

IMSA
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The 50 drivers have been announced for Round 2 of the IMSA iRacing Pro Series at virtual WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.

The field in Thursday’s 6 p.m. ET race (streaming on iRacing YouTube, Faccebook, Twitch and other platforms) will feature 10 IMSA winners at the real-life road course in Monterey, California.

Patrick Long is the winningest with five victories (GT2, 2005 and 2009; DP/overall – 2007; ALMS GT,  2010-11), followed by Richard Westbrook (three wins, twice overall).

ENTRY LIST: Click here for the field of 50 drivers in Round 2

‘IT FELT LIKE REAL LIFE’: Drivers on how simulated Sebring went

Long said in an IMSA release that it had been five years since his last visit to a simulator. “I am excited to jump back into the sim/online community,” said Long, who will drive a No. 45 Porsche 911 RSR for Wright Motorsports. “It’s been amazing to see the surge of enthusiasm and attention that these unique times have brought to the very advanced and successful online community that’s existed for a decade. I commend IMSA for providing a platform for our fans to engage and even compare their lap times to some of their favorite drivers.”

Jeroen Bleekemolen, John Edwards, Colin Braun, Nick Tandy, Cameron Cassels, Alessandro Balzan, Connor De Phillippi, Corey Lewis and Gavin Ernstone also are past winners on the 2.238-mile, 12-turn track.

NBC IMSA analysts A.J. Allmendinger and Townsend Bell also are entered.

Click here for the entry list in the IMSA iRacing Pro Series at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.

Drivers will have a choice of four GTLM cars: the BMW M8, Porsche 911 RSR, Ferrari 488 and Ford GT.

The 90-minute race will be the second in the biweekly six-race series, which will head April 30 to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Bruno Spengler led a BMW sweep of the top three in the March 21 opener at Sebring International Raceway.

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup
IMSA
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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.


QUALIFYING

Results

Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III