IMSA Challenge at Mid-Ohio Sunday: How to watch, start times, schedule, TV, entry list

IMSA Mid-Ohio start TV schedule

After a two-month break (because of the rescheduling of Long Beach and Laguna Seca), the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will return this weekend with a full schedule of racing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in the Acura Sports Car Challenge.

Practice will begin Friday on the 13-turn, 2.258-mile road course that also will play host to the MX-5 Cup, Michelin Pilot Challenge and Prototype Challenge series.

Sunday will feature the 2-hour, 40-minute race in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with the DPi, LMP3 and GTD classes. There are 26 cars entered in the event. After winning last year’s race at Team Penske with Helio Castroneves (who has returned to a partial IndyCar schedule this season), Ricky Taylor will be paired with Felipe Albuquerque in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing. In GTD, Jack Hawksworth and Aaron Telitz return to defend their win in the No. 14 Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3

STARING LINEUP: The grid for the Acura Sports Car Challenge

Mid-Ohio marks the beginning of the IMSA Sprint Cup for GTD after endurance races at Daytona and Sebring. Hawksworth and Telitz won the 2020 Sprint Cup title.

Through the first two races in 2021, there have been no repeat winners in any IMSA class.

Here are the start times, schedule and TV info for the IMSA Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (all times are ET):

IMSA Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course start times, schedule, TV info

When: Sunday, 2:40 p.m.

Race distance: Two hours, 40 minutes on the 13-turn, 2.258-mile road course

Forecast: According to, it’s expected to be 64 degrees with a 39% chance of rain at the green flag.

Entry list: Click here to see the field for the Acura Sports Car Challenge


TV:  2:30 p.m., NBCSN;, NBC Sports App. Dave Burns will be on play by play with analysts Calvin Fish and Steve Letarte. Parker Kligerman and Dillon Welch are the pit reporters.

TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold Coverage: Flag to flag beginning at 2:30 p.m.

Race streaming: NBC Sports App, and TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold

IMSA Radio: All sessions live on and; SiriusXM live race coverage will begin May 16 at 2:30 p.m. (XM392, Internet 992)


Here’s a rundown of the IMSA Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course schedule:

Friday, May 14

9:15-10:15 a.m.: Michelin Pilot Challenge practice

12:20-12:50 p.m.: MX-5 Cup practice

1:15-2:15 p.m.: Michelin Pilot Challenge practice

2:35-3:20 p.m.: Prototype Challenge practice

3:40-4:10 p.m.: MX-5 Cup practice

4:30-5:30 p.m.: WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

5:50-6:05 p.m.: Michelin Pilot Challenge TCR qualifying

6:10-6:25 p.m.: Michelin Pilot Challenge GS qualifying

Saturday, May 15

8-8:30 a.m.: MX-5 Cup qualifying

8:50-10:05 a.m.: WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

10:20-10:55 a.m.: Protoype Challenge practice

11:15 a.m.-noon: MX-5 Cup Race 1

12:20-1:50 p.m.: WeatherTech SportsCar Championship qualifying

2:10-2:25 p.m.: Prototype Challenge qualifying

3:35-5:35 p.m.: Michelin Pilot Challenge race

Sunday, May 16

9:00-9:20 a.m.: WeatherTech SportsCar Championship warmup

9:40-11:25 a.m.: Prototype Challenge race

11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: MX-5 Cup Race 2

2:40-5:20 p.m.: WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race

Hunter Lawrence defends Haiden Deegan after controversial block pass at Detroit


Media and fan attention focused on a controversial run-in between Haiden Deegan and his Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing teammate Jordon Smith during Round 10 of the Monster Energy Supercross race at Detroit, after which the 250 East points’ Hunter Lawrence defends the young rider in the postrace news conference.

Deegan took the early lead in Heat 1 of the round, but the mood swiftly changed when he became embroiled in a spirited battle with teammate Smith.

On Lap 3, Smith caught Deegan with a fast pass through the whoops. Smith briefly held the lead heading into a bowl turn but Deegan had the inside line and threw a block pass. In the next few turns, the action heated up until Smith eventually ran into the back of Deegan’s Yamaha and crashed.

One of the highlights of the battle seemed to include a moment when Deegan waited on Smith in order to throw a second block pass, adding fuel to the controversy.

After his initial crash, Smith fell to seventh on the next lap. He would crash twice more during the event, ultimately finishing four laps off the pace in 20th.

The topic was inevitably part of the postrace news conference.

“It was good racing; it was fun,” Deegan said at about the 27-minute mark in the video above. “I just had some fun doing it.”

Smith had more trouble in the Last Chance Qualifier. He stalled his bike in heavy traffic, worked his way into a battle for fourth with the checkers in sight, but crashed a few yards shy of the finish line and was credited with seventh. Smith earned zero points and fell to sixth in the standings.

Lawrence defends Deegan
Jordon Smith failed to make the Detroit Supercross Main and fell to sixth in the points. – Feld Motor Sports

“I think he’s like fifth in points,” Deegan said. “He’s a little out of it. Beside that it was good, I don’t know. I wasn’t really paying attention.”

Deegan jokingly deflected an earlier question with the response that he wasn’t paying attention during the incident.

“He’s my teammate, but he’s a veteran, he’s been in this sport for a while,” Deegan said. “I was up there just battling. I want to win as much as everybody else. It doesn’t matter if it’s a heat race or a main; I just want to win. I was just trying to push that.”

As Deegan and Smith battled, Jeremy Martin took the lead. Deegan finished second in the heat and backed up his performance with a solid third-place showing in the main, which was his second podium finish in a short six-race career. Deegan’s first podium was earned at Daytona, just two rounds ago.

But as Deegan struggled to find something meaningful to say, unsurprisingly for a 17-year-old rider who was not scheduled to run the full 250 schedule this year, it was the championship leader Lawrence who came to his defense.

Lawrence defends Deegan
A block pass by Haiden Deegan led to a series of events that eventually led to Jordon Smith failing to make the Main. – Feld Motor Sports

“I just want to point something out, which kind of amazes me,” Lawrence said during the conference. “So many of the people on social media, where everyone puts their expertise in, are saying the racing back in the ’80s, the early 90s, when me were men. They’re always talking about how gnarly it was and then anytime a block pass or something happens now, everyone cries about it.

“That’s just a little bit interesting. Pick one. You want the gnarly block passes from 10 years ago and then you get it, everyone makes a big song and dance about it.”

Pressed further, Lawrence defended not only the pass but the decision-making process that gets employed lap after lap in a Supercross race.

“It’s easy to point the finger,” Lawrence said. “We’re out there making decisions in a split millisecond. People have all month to pay their phone bill and they still can’t do that on time.

“We’re making decisions at such a fast reaction [time with] adrenaline. … I’m not just saying it for me or Haiden. I speak for all the guys. No one is perfect and we’re under a microscope out there. The media is really quick to point a finger when someone makes a mistake.”

The media is required to hold athletes accountable for their actions. They are also required to tell the complete story.