IMSA 2022 Mid-Ohio results: Wayne Taylor Racing wins again; Montoya triumphs in LMP2

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IMSA Mid-Ohio results: Ricky Taylor took the lead after contact with Renger van der Zande as the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Acura outdueled the No. 01 Cadillac of Chip Ganassi Racing in the Lexus Grand Prix at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Taylor and co-driver Filipe Albuquerque delivered a second consecutive victory in the DPi category Sunday in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Series for WTR, which won two weeks ago at Laguna Seca.

“I just felt the touch and tried to give him room,” Taylor told NBC Sports’ Parker Kligerman. “I don’t know what happened. The whole Konica Minolta Acura team just executing at a track where we need to get everything right. They just nailed it.

RESULTS: Click here for overall finishing order l Click here for the class breakdown

POINTS: Standings after Mid-Ohio

“I think the great teams always find a way to win. We may not have been the fastest in qualifying, and I think that goes to show how strong our team is that we find a way no matter what.”

Starting at the start when Albuquerque got the jump on pole-sitter Sebastien Bourdais, the No. 10 and No. 01 traded the lead four times. Bourdais bumped his way past Albuquerque back into the lead on Lap 10, but Taylor led 51 of the final 56 laps as van der Zande faded to fifth.

“I think Seb did a fantastic job putting it in the lead,” van der Zande said. “When I got in I struggled with the tires on the restart. I tried to keep the position in first but lost control of the car by a little touch. It’s tough to keep a fast car behind when dealing with low grip. It’s a shame. I think we had a good shot at winning with a good car and a good strategy.”

Bourdais and van der Zande led a race-high 61 of 121 laps.

It was the 47th career win for Wayne Taylor Racing and its second at Mid-Ohio, where Acuras have won five consecutive. Taylor earned his fourth Mid-Ohio victory and 29th of his career, and Albuquerque scored his 10th career win and second at Mid-Ohio.

The No. 10 moved into the points lead with the victory as the No. 60 Acura of Meyer Shank Racing took second, and the No. 31 Cadillac of Action Express rounded out the podium.

A rundown of winners in other categories:


LMP2

A day after racing in the IndyCar race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Juan Pablo Montoya scored his first victory in the No. 81 ORECA LMP2 07 for Dragonspeed with co-driver Henrik Hedman.

Montoya rebounded to take the lead after serving a drive-through penalty for an earlier pass into first.

” I saw an opportunity and went for it,” Montoya told NBC Sports’ Brian Till after his seventh career IMSA win (second at Mid-Ohio).

LMP3

The No. 54 Ligier JS P320 earned CORE Autosport’s first victory of the season and 43rd in IMSA. It was the first victory at Mid-Ohio for co-drivers Jon Bennett (19th career win) and Colin Braun (21st career win).

GTD

The No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M4 GT3 of Bill Auberlen and Robby Foley was awarded the class victory after a postrace inspection failure.

The No. 70 McLaren 720S GT3 of inception racing was ruled underweight after taking the checkered flag for the first time in its sixth IMSA start. Co-drivers Brendan Iribe and Jordan Pepper also were on the verge of their first IMSA wins as the team stretched its final fuel stint for 56 laps.


STATS PACKAGE FOR IMSA LEXUS GRAND PRIX AT MID-OHIO:

Fastest laps by driver

Fastest laps by driver after race (over the weekend)

Fastest laps by driver and class after race

Fastest lap sequence

Leader sequence

Lap chart

Race analysis by lap

Time cards

Pit stop time cards

Drive Time

Best sector times

NEXT: The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will head to the Detroit Grand Prix for a 100-minute sprint at 3 p.m. ET on June 4 with coverage on USA and Peacock.

Jimmie Johnson won’t race full time in 2023; leaves open possibility of returning at Ganassi

Jimmie Johnson race 2023
Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images
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Though he remains uncertain of his plans for next year, Jimmie Johnson won’t race full time in 2023, scaling back his schedule after running a full 17-race NTT IndyCar Series season.

“This was a difficult choice for me, but in my heart, I know it’s the right one,” Johnson said in a statement Monday morning. “I’m not exactly sure what the next chapter holds, but if an opportunity comes along that makes sense, I will consider it. I still have a bucket list of racing events I would like to take part in. Competing at this level in IndyCar has been such a great experience.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better team to race for than Chip Ganassi and Chip Ganassi Racing. Everyone worked extremely hard for the last two seasons, pushing to get the best performances out of me every single week. The support from my crew and teammates Dario (Franchitti), Scott (Dixon), Tony (Kanaan), Marcus (Ericsson) and Alex (Palou) went above and beyond anything I could have ever asked for.”

WHAT’S NEXT FOR JIMMIE JOHNSON: An analysis of his racing options for the 2023 season

Driving the No. 48 Dallara-Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing, Johnson ranked 21st in the 2022 points standings with a career-best fifth place July 24 at Iowa Speedway.

After running only road and street courses for Ganassi in 2021, the seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion added ovals this year. In his Indy 500 debut, he qualified 12th and finished 28th after a late crash.

“I do have a desire to go back (to IndyCar), it’s just at this point, I know what’s required to do a full schedule, and I don’t have that in me,” Johnson told AP. “I don’t have that passion that I need for myself to commit myself to a full season.”

That leaves open the concept of Johnson returning part time with Ganassi, perhaps exclusively on ovals.

“We are fully supportive of Jimmie,” team owner Chip Ganassi said in a statement. “He has been a valued member of our team and if we can find a way to continue working together, we would like to do so.”

During IndyCar’s season finale race weekend, Johnson told reporters Sept. 9 that he planned to explore his options with wife Chandra and daughters Evie and Lydia. Johnson told the Associated Press that his family is considering living abroad for a year or two, and he has toyed with the idea of running in the World Endurance Championship sports car series because of its international locales.

Johnson hasn’t ruled out IndyCar, IMSA sports cars or even a cameo in NASCAR next year. Since retiring from full-time NASCAR after the 2020 season, he has entered the endurance races of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in the No. 48 Ally Cadillac (including Saturday’s Petit Le Mans season finale). Johnson also wants to race in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and is a prime candidate for the Garage 56 entry (a joint project of NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports).

Johnson told the AP he is interested in becoming the latest driver to try “The Double” and run both the Coca-Cola 600 and Indy 500 on the same day (the most recent was Kurt Busch in 2014).

“You know me and endurance sports, and ‘The Double’ sounds awesome,” Johnson, a four-time Coke 600 winner, told AP. “I’ve always had this respect for the guys who have done ‘The Double.’ I would say it is more of a respect thing than a bucket-list item, and I’d love to put some energy into that idea and see if I can pull it off.”

It is less likely that he would return to IMSA’s endurance events because its top prototype series is being overhauled, limiting the amount of inventory available for the new LMDh cars in the rebranded GTP division.

Johnson has confirmed that he would retain primary sponsor Carvana, which has backed him in IndyCar the past two years. He revealed his decision Monday during the last episode of “Reinventing the Wheel,” Carvana Racing’s eight-part docuseries about his 2023 season.

“I’m thankful for the partnership with a company like Carvana for allowing me to take this journey in IndyCar, for seeing the value in our partnership and being open to future opportunities together,” Johnson said. “They have truly showed me that there are no finish lines in life. Along with Carvana, The American Legion, Ally, cbdMD and Frank August were there every step of the way, and I couldn’t have done it without all of them. Most importantly — and the true rockstars in all of this –my family, Chani, Evie and Lydia. They have always allowed me to chase my dreams, and we are all just really excited about what the future holds for all of us. I have enjoyed every minute of these last two years.”

Said Carvana co-founder Ryan Keeton: “During the past two years, Jimmie Johnson has been so amazing to collaborate with. Our team admires his passion, hard work and commitment to continuous improvement while also having fun, and we look forward to continuing to support him next year in this new chapter.”