Harry Tincknell put Mazda Team Joest atop the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship field to begin its fifth race day of 2019.
The chart-topping effort in the 20-minute warm-up outing at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park put the No. 55 Mazda RT24-P in its best position of the weekend to this point, improving upon the third-place qualifying result for Tincknell’s co-driver Jonathan Bomarito on Friday evening.
While Bomarito tore around the 2.34-mile temporary street circuit in 1:19.960 to land third on the grid for the 100-minute race, a 1:20.957 was enough for Tincknell to lead warm-up.
Tincknell was joined near the top of the timesheet by second-place qualifier Helio Castroneves. Both drivers were fastest on their final laps of the session, with Castroneves and the No. 7 Acura ARX-05 only coming within 0.633 seconds of Tincknell and the No. 55 Mazda DPi.
The second Team Penske Acura DPi, qualified to the overall pole by Juan Pablo Montoya, was placed third on the warm-up timesheet by Dane Cameron. The American pilot was a mere 0.007 seconds slower than Castroneves on their respective best laps.
Driving the second Mazda, Oliver Jarvis set the third-fastest time at 0.181 seconds quicker than Felipe Nasr’s best lap which was good enough for fifth in the No. 31 Cadillac DPi-V.R from Action Express Racing — the defending race-winning entry.
Nearly 1.6 seconds off Tincknell’s pace, Jordan Taylor was seventh in the Cadillac DPi of Wayne Taylor Racing.
Both JDC-Miller Motorsports Cadillacs stopped on course during the brief outing, with the team’s No. 84 machine bringing out a red flag when it sat motionless at Turn 10.
Farnbacher Paces GTD in Acura
Though Acura was denied the top spot in the premier DPi division, Mario Farnbacher ensured the manufacturer was represented at the top of the all-GT3 GT Daytona category in warm-up.
The Meyer Shank Racing driver put the team’s No. 86 car 0.156 seconds clear of Bryan Sellers as final on-track preparations were completed before GTD’s only street race during the year.
Toni Vilander, Katherine Legge and Zacharie Robichon completed the top five for Scuderia Corsa, Shank and Park Place Motorsports. Robichon will start from the pole after Turner Motorsport lost its first-place qualifying effort due to a technical infraction.
At 1.679 seconds, the split between the full GTD field was less than half the size of the gap between the 11 DPi cars.
The one-hour, 40-minute race is all that remains for North America’s premier sports car racing championship in Detroit. The green flag is scheduled to fly at 12:40 p.m. EDT with wet weather anticipated.