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David Malsher-Lopez

Detroit IMSA: Bamber puts Ganassi Cadillac on top in FP1

Bamber in fact led most of the session until Ricky Taylor caused a surprise three minutes from the checkered flag, when he set fastest time in the Wayne Taylor Racing Acura ARX-05 by going fastest in the first two sectors. He had earlier survived a trip into the Turn 3 runoff.

But just a minute later, Bamber produced a lap that, although a tad slower in sectors 1 and 2, was close enough in time that his superior third sector saw him inch back ahead by 0.146sec.

The Meyer Shank Racing Acura of Oliver Jarvis was 0.55sec off WTR’s similar car, but that was still good enough for third place. It would likely not have been had Pipo Derani been in the Action Express Racing Cadillac when the track was in its best condition, but the Brazilian gave up the majority of his seat time to his new teammate Olivier Pla. The 40-year-old Frenchman has replaced Tristan Nunez in the line-up and needed to adapt to the AXR Caddy and also the bumpy 2.35-mile 14-turn track on Belle Isle. Pla’s best effort was 0.9sec from top spot but good enough to see him ahead of the second Ganassi Cadillac and the JDC Miller Motorsports’ Cadillac.

Mike Skeen was fastest in the only other class competing this weekend, GTD, and his Korthoff Motorsports Mercedes AMG GT3 lapped the track in 1min30.759sec, mere hundredths ahead of Aaron Telitz’s best effort in the Vasser Sullivan Racing Lexus RC F.

Aidan Read was an impressive third in Rick Ware Racing’s Acura NSX, ahead of Roman De Angelis in the Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage and Jan Heylen’s Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.

Second practice begins at 12.05pm local (Eastern) time, with qualifying at 5.30pm.

Cla Driver Class Chassis Laps Time Gap
1 New Zealand Earl Bamber
United Kingdom Alex Lynn
DPi Cadillac DPi 45 1'20.178  
2 United States Ricky Taylor
Portugal Filipe Albuquerque
DPi Acura DPi 42 1'20.324 0.146
3 United Kingdom Oliver Jarvis
United Kingdom Tom Blomqvist
DPi Acura DPi 44 1'20.874 0.696
4 France Olivier Pla
Brazil Pipo Derani
DPi Cadillac DPi 50 1'21.069 0.891
5 Netherlands Renger van der Zande
France Sébastien Bourdais
DPi Cadillac DPi 38 1'21.203 1.025
6 France Tristan Vautier
United Kingdom Richard Westbrook
DPi Cadillac DPi 50 1'21.500 1.322
7 United States Mike Skeen
United Kingdom Stevan McAleer
GTD Mercedes AMG GT3 36 1'30.759 10.581
8 United States Frankie Montecalvo
United States Aaron Telitz
GTD Lexus RC F GT3 45 1'30.783 10.605
9 United States Ryan Eversley
Australia Aidan Read
GTD Acura NSX GT3 31 1'30.865 10.687
10 Canada Roman De Angelis
United Kingdom Ross Gunn
GTD Aston Martin Vantage GT3 43 1'30.974 10.796
11 United States Ryan Hardwick
Belgium Jan Heylen
GTD Porsche 911 GT3 R 47 1'31.009 10.831
12 United Kingdom Ben Barnicoat
United States Kyle Kirkwood
GTD Lexus RC F GT3 45 1'31.054 10.876
13 United States Robby Foley
United States Bill Auberlen
GTD BMW M4 GT3 44 1'31.100 10.922
14 United States Russell Ward
Switzerland Philip Ellis
GTD Mercedes AMG GT3 40 1'31.273 11.095
15 United States Bryan Sellers
United States Madison Snow
GTD BMW M4 GT3 37 1'31.415 11.237
16 United States Robert Megennis
United States Jeff Westphal
GTD Lamborghini Huracan GT3 46 1'31.474 11.296
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