Acura Fastest in First Laps at Detroit

Ricky Taylor practice times in Penske Acura DPi at Detroit
Ricky Taylor made the No. 7 Acura ARX-05 the fastest car to begin the 2018 Chevrolet Sports Car Classic weekend in Detroit. | Photo: Gannon Burgett / The Apex

With Acura power, Team Penske began the Chevrolet Sports Car Classic weekend as the fastest IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship team.

Though Chevrolet provides title sponsorship for the event, Roger Penske’s team puts on the race weekend on Detroit’s Belle Isle and is debuting its Acura ARX-05 cars at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park. Ricky Taylor made it a successful first session on the temporary street circuit for the car by setting the 90-minute outing’s fastest lap.

Taylor’s 45th of 47 laps for the No. 7 Acura DPi, at 1:21.909, was the quickest revolution of the 2.35-mile temporary street circuit.

Both Acuras owned the fastest two laps late in the session before Felipe Nasr and Joao Barbosa put the Nos. 31 and 5 Cadillac DPi-V.Rs in second and third, 0.206 and 0.604 seconds back, respectively. Dane Cameron, with the best lap in the second Acura, ended up fourth.

Colin Braun reached the fifth position in CORE autosport’s No. 54 ORECA 07, making himself and the car the top LMP2 competitors. The remainder of the LMP2 cars were at the bottom of the Prototype division, with the exception of the No. 99 JDC-Miller Motorsports ORECA that placed eighth.

Legge Tops GTD

Part-time Meyer Shank Racing driver Katherine Legge came out on top in GT Daytona, the only other class present this weekend, ensuring Acura was the fastest manufacturer in both categories with a 1:29.905 lap.

Legge and Shank’s No. 86 Acura NSX GT3, initially confirmed for only the four Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup rounds, was added to the field at Mid-Ohio and for this Detroit event following early-season success.Legge was nearly half a second quicker than her closest competitor on Friday morning, lapping 0.455 seconds clear of Jack Hawksworth in the No. 15 3GT Racing Lexus RC F GT3.

MSR Acura NSX GT3 at Mid-Ohio
Meyer Shank Racing’s part-time GTD entry was the fastest car in the class as it returned to action in the Motor City. | Photo: Aaron Durant / The Apex

Lawson Aschenbach added the second Acura to the top three while Jeroen Bleekemolen and Madison Snow completed the top five in Mercedes-AMG GT3 and Lamborghini Huracan GT3 machinery.

The WeatherTech Championship will return to the track from 1:05–2:55 p.m. EDT Friday for one final practice session before qualifying at 5:20–6 p.m.

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