Plowman tops opening ALMS practice at Mosport
Martin Plowman’s first trip to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park started pretty well. The English driver set the fastest time in testing for Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport on Friday – a 1:09.927 (126.595 mph) in Conquest Endurance’s Morgan-Nissan prototype.
Plowman, driving with the No. 37 P2 entry with David Heinemeier-Hansson, was the only driver to post a time below the 1:10 range. The four fastest cars – two P1s and a pair of P2 entries – were within 0.768 seconds in preparations for Sunday’s fifth round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron.
Dyson Racing’s No. 16 Mazda-powered Lola coupe was second quickest during the session and first in P1. Guy Smith, driving with Chris Dyson, set a time of 1:10.242 (126.027 mph). Dyson Racing experienced considerable success at CTMP with two overall ALMS victories plus a class win since 2003.
Scott Tucker put up an impressive lap of 1:10.534 (125.505 mph) to put Level 5 Motorsports’ No. 055 Honda Performance Development ARX-03b second in P2 and third overall. Tucker and teammate Christophe Bouchut lead the class championship with three victories in four races including two weeks ago at Lime Rock Park.
Dyson Racing’s other Lola-Mazda driven by Eric Lux and Tony Burgess set the fourth fastest time and second in P1 at 1:10.695 (125.220 mph).
The No. 95 Level 5 prototype of Tucker and Luis Diaz was third in class at 1:16.226 (116.134 mph).
BMW Team RLL’s No. 55 BMW M3 GT of Bill Auberlen and Jörg Müller went quickest in GT at 1:17.342 (114.458 mph) to go 0.037 seconds faster than the No. 3 Corvette C6 ZR1 of Jan Magnussen and Antonio Garcia. Magnussen won in class for Corvette Racing at CTMP with Oliver Gavin, but the two are in competing cars this year.
The No. 01 Extreme Speed Motorsports Ferrari F458 Italia was third-fastest at 1:17.410 (114.357 mph) with Scott Sharp partnering Johannes van Overbeek, who is set to make his 100th ALMS start Sunday.
Merchant Services Racing was the fastest team in Prototype Challenge thanks to a lap of 1:11.371 (124.034 mph) for the No. 8 ORECA FLM09 of Kyle Marcelli and Matt Downs. Marcelli was the PC pole-winner last year at his home track.
RSR Racing’s No. 9 entry of Bruno Junqueira and Tomy Drissi sat second at 1:11.659 (123.535 mph) with CORE autosport’s No. 05 ORECA third at 1:11.775 (123.335 mph). Colin Braun and Jon Bennett – class winners of the last two ALMS rounds – share the car.
TRG’s No. 66 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup driven by Spencer Pumpelly and Emilio Di Guida was the fastest GT Challenge car with a lap of 1:22.204 (107.688 mph). Pumpelly was part of TRG’s winning effort in last year’s race, and the car was 0.354 seconds clear of Green Hornet Racing’s No. 34 Porsche of Damien Faulkner and Peter LeSaffre.
Alex Job Racing, the class championship leader, was third at 1:23.962 (105.433 mph); Cooper MacNeil and Leh Keen are going for their second straight victory after winning in class two weeks ago at Lime Rock Park.