Dane Cameron’s first flying laps during Friday’s second practice session at Watkins Glen International put Team Penske’s No. 6 Acura ARX-05 well ahead of its competition to end day one in Upstate New York on top.
Shortly after replacing Juan Pablo Montoya in the car, Cameron produced a 1:30.014 lap to gap the sister No. 7 Acura DPi by nearly nine-tenths of a second.
The time marks a 0.676-second improvement over Harry Tincknell’s chart-topping Practice 1 lap and becomes the new unofficial prototype lap record at 2.336 seconds under the current official time, set by Colin Braun in an LMP2 car during qualifying a year ago.
Though the two Acuras entered the closing minutes of the one-hour session occupying the top two spots, that changed with Jonathan Bomarito backed up the No. 55 Mazda RT24-P’s first-practice performance with a new second-fastest lap in Practice 2, coming within 0.828 seconds of Cameron.
Helio Castroneves remained in the third position while Renger van der Zande in fourth was quickest driver to climb into a Cadillac DPi-V.R Friday afternoon. Braun completed the top five for CORE autosport, 1.496 seconds slower than the top lap.
LMP2 Gap Grows
After being within half a second of each other in Practice 1, the two LMP2 machines were split by 0.763 seconds for the second session.
Matt McMurry ended Practice 2 as the fastest driver in the division, though his best lap was 0.613 seconds slower than the quickest LMP2 lap set Friday morning, also by his No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA 07.
Westbrook Fastest Again in GTLM
The driver that led the GT Le Mans category in Practice 1 backed up the feat to end Friday’s running with Richard Westbrook putting Chip Ganassi Racing atop the class with the top lap in the No. 67 Ford GT.
At 1:42.321, Westbrook lowered his mark from the morning session by more than three-tenths of a second.
Powered by a fresh engine after the unit failed in Practice 1, the No. 3 Corvette C7.R placed second at the hands of Antonio Garcia with a best lap 0.084 seconds quicker than that of Joey Hand in the second Ford.
Earl Bamber was the quickest Porsche pilot, 0.387 seconds off Westbrook’s pace, while Oliver Gavin completed the top five in Corvette Racing’s second car.
Though at the bottom of the eight-car class, the BMW M8 GTE duo showed consistency on their best laps, lapping just 0.002 seconds apart but seven-tenths away from the mark to beat.
Magnus Sweeps Friday for GTD
After being 0.246 seconds quicker than its competition to begin the weekend, Magnus Racing’s Lamborghini Huracan GT3 was again fastest in GT Daytona but only by 0.116 seconds in Practice 2.
Lamborghini, Porsche, Lexus and Acura each featured in the top four thanks to the top times from Scott Hargrove, Jack Hawksworth and Mario Farnbacher — each marginally slower than Spencer Pumpelly who led the way in the Magnus Lamborghini.
Marco Seefried added a second Porsche 911 GT3 R to the top five, lapping within 0.341 seconds of Pumpelly driving Black Swan Racing’s entry.
The next IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship session at Watkins Glen is Practice 3, scheduled to run from 8–9 a.m. EDT Saturday. The grid will be set for Sunday’s six-hour race a short time later, with GTD to qualify first at 11:35 a.m.