Sebring 12 Hours: Taylor beats Van der Zande to pole for IMSA decider

Acura Team Penske driver Ricky Taylor took pole position for tomorrow's Sebring 12 Hours that will conclude the IMSA Sportscar Championship, seeing off main championship rival Renger van der Zande

Sebring 12 Hours: Taylor beats Van der Zande to pole for IMSA decider

The pair enter the season finale just two points apart after Taylor's team-mate Dane Cameron gave up victory on the penultimate lap at Laguna Seca last time out, allowing Taylor and Helio Castroneves through to win.

Driving the #7 Acura ARX-05 he'll share with Castroneves and Alexander Rossi, Taylor lapped the 3.74-mile course in 1m46.874s to beat outgoing Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R driver van der Zande - whose seat is set to be taken by Taylor next year - by 0.251s.

Van der Zande, who shares with Ryan Briscoe and Scott Dixon, was 0.015s quicker than Cameron and will start from second ahead of the #6 ARX-05 that will be co-driven by Juan-Pablo Montoya and Simon Pagenaud.

Sebastien Bourdais will start fourth in the JDC Miller Motorsports #5 Cadillac ahead of Mazda's Harry Tincknell and championship outsider Pipo Derani only sixth for Action Express Racing.

The defending Sebring 12 Hour winner is nine points off the championship lead, with regular co-driver Felipe Nasr unable to win the title having missed the second Daytona race due to a positive coronavirus test.

Oliver Jarvis will line up seventh in the second Mazda ahead of JDC Miller's Matheus Leist.

Meanwhile Patrick Kelly scored his sixth consecutive LMP2 class pole in the PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA 07, 1.77s faster than Naveen Rao's identical Inter Europol Competition machine.

John Farano (Starworks ORECA) and Don Yount (Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA) will line up third and fourth.

In GTLM, Antonio Garcia took pole by a convincing margin in the #3 Corvette C8.R he'll share with Jordan Taylor and Nicky Catsburg.

The Spaniard's lap 1m55.456s was 0.660s faster than Connor De Phillippi's #25 BMW M8, with fellow BMW driver Jesse Krohn beating the second Corvette of Tommy Milner to fourth.

The practice sessions had been dominated by the Porsche 911 RSRs on the Weissach marque's final appearance as a factory team in IMSA, only for Nick Tandy and series returnee Neel Jani to qualify fifth and sixth.

In GT Daytona, former Champ Car racer Jan Heylen's early benchmark of 2m00.844s in the Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R was never beaten.

His closest challenger, Andrew Davis in the Hardpoint Racing Audi R8, was over half a second slower, with Aaron Telitz third in the #14 AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F.

The championship-leading #86 Meyer Shank Racing Acura NSX of Mario Farnbacher and Matt McMurry will start eighth after a disappointing qualifying for Shinya Michimi.

Results

Pos Class Driver Team Car Gap
1 DPi H.Castroneves, R.Taylor, A.Rossi Acura Team Penske Acura 1m46.874s
2 DPi R.van der Zande, R.Briscoe, S.Dixon Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R Cadillac 0.251s
3 DPi J.P.Montoya, D.Cameron, S.Pagenaud Acura Team Penske Acura 0.266s
4 DPi S.Bourdais, T.Vautier, L.Duval JDC-Mustang Sampling Racing Cadillac 0.335s
5 DPi J.Bomarito, H.Tincknell, R.H.-Reay Mazda Team Joest Mazda 0.371s
6 DPi F.Nasr, P.Derani, G.Chaves Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac 0.453s
7 DPi O.Jarvis, T.Nunez, O.Pla Mazda Team Joest Mazda 0.600s
8 DPi M.Leist, S.Simpson, S.Andrews JDC-Miller Motorsports Cadillac 0.822s
9 LMP2 P.Kelly, S.Trummer, S.Huffaker PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA/Gibson 4.499s
10 LMP2 J.Smiechowski, N.Rao, M.Bell Inter Europol Competition ORECA/Gibson 6.273s
11 LMP2 D.Yount, P.Byrne, G.Cosmo Performance Tech Motorsports ORECA/Gibson 7.171s
12 LMP2 J.Farano, M.Jensen, D.H.Hansson Tower Motorsport by Starworks ORECA/Gibson 7.320s
13 GTLM A.Garcia, J.Taylor, N.Catsburg Corvette Racing Chevrolet 8.582s
14 GTLM B.Spengler, C.De Phillippi, C.Herta BMW Team RLL BMW 9.242s
15 GTLM J.Krohn, J.M.Edwards, A.Farfus BMW Team RLL BMW 9.442s
16 GTLM O.Gavin, T.Milner, M.Fassler Corvette Racing Chevrolet 9.572s
17 GTLM N.Tandy, F.Makowiecki, E.Bamber Porsche GT Team Porsche 9.966s
18 GTLM E.Bamber, L.Vanthoor, N.Jani Porsche GT Team Porsche 10.900s
19 GTD R.Hardwick, P.Long, J.Heylen Wright Motorsports Porsche 13.970s
20 GTD R.Ferriol, A.Davis, P.Kaffer Team Hardpoint Audi 14.672s
21 GTD J.Hawksworth, A.Telitz, K.Kirkwood AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus 14.731s
22 GTD R.Heistand, S.Schothorst, F.Perera GRT Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini 14.778s
23 GTD C.MacNeil, A.Balzan, J.Westphal Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 14.928s
24 GTD F.Montecalvo, T.Bell, M.De Quesada AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus 14.965s
25 GTD R.Foley, D.Machavern, N.Yelloly Turner Motorsport BMW 15.336s
26 GTD M.Farnbacher, M.McMurry, S.Michimi Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian Acura 15.412s
27 GTD B.Sellers, M.Snow, C.Lewis Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini 15.561s
28 GTD G.Robinson, L.Aschenbach, M.Miller Riley Motorsports Mercedes 15.815s
29 GTD I.James, R.De Angelis, D.Turner Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin 15.831s
30 GTD T.Hindman, M.Goikhberg, J.Hand Heinricher Racing with Meyer Shank Racing Acura 16.279s
31 GTD A.Lally, J.Potter, S.Pumpelly GRT Magnus Racing Team Lamborghini 17.489s

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