Gurney Edges Rival Pruett in Waning Laps of Practice at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
Ferraris Top GT Time Charts in Friday Practice Sessions
Together. Again. Alex Gurney edged Scott Pruett for the fastest lap with minutes remaining in Friday’s second practice for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Continental Tire Sports Car Festival Powered by Mazda at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. The two finished a fraction of a second apart – Gurney winning – in last year’s Daytona Prototype event at the 2.238-mile, 11-turn circuit.
On Friday, Gurney recorded a best lap of 1:21.285 (99.118 mph) in the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Corvette DP. Pruett’s best time was 1:21.657 (98.666 mph) in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates BMW/Riley.
The pair also led the morning’s first practice with Pruett fractionally quicker at 1:21.836 (98.451 mph), while Gurney’s best morning lap was 1:22.242 (97.965 mph).
“We have been in this position before, so it strangely doesn’t feel that good actually, the car has been fast on Fridays a lot and now we just have to seal the deal, but so far so good,” said Gurney.
Pruett and driving partner Memo Rojas enjoy an 18-point DP championship lead entering Sunday’s race (SPEED, live, 3 p.m. EDT) of 2-3/4 hours. Qualifying will be held Saturday.
Johannes van Overbeek led the way in GT, posting a best lap at 1:27.721 (91.846 mph) in the No. 03 Tequila Patrón Ferrari 458 he is sharing with Mike Hedlund. Olivier Beretta was second in GT in the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458. Both laps were recorded in the morning session, although Beretta also led the afternoon session.
In Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge practice, Bill Auberlen posted the fastest Grand Sport (GS) time and Gareth Nixon was quickest in Street Tuner (ST), both during the morning session. Auberlen turned a best time of 1:35.230 (84.604 mph) in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M3, while Nixon clocked at 1:40.600 (80.087 mph) in the No. 76 Driving Your Mind/HPD Honda Civic Si.
Jack Roush Jr. was involved in an incident in Turn 5 during the morning session. He was transported to a local hospital and diagnosed with a fractured left wrist. Roush will return home to Michigan for surgery and the No. 61 Ford Mustang he was slated to co-drive with Billy Johnson was withdrawn from Saturday’s combined 2-1/2-hour race.