Ford Wins Fifth Continental Tire Challenge TOTAL Pole Award

In Qualifying For Friday’s Circuit of The Americas 150Corvette Daytona Prototype Paces Opening Practice For Lone Star Le MansFord GT, BMW M6 Lead WeatherTech Championship GT ClassesScott Maxwell captured his fifth TOTAL Pole Award of the season in IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge qualifying for Friday’s Circuit of The Americas 150. The Canadian ran a lap of 2:23.439 (85.3 mph) in the No. 15 Multimatic Motorsports Ford Shelby GT350R-C co-driven by Billy Johnson, extending his series-leading total to 15 career poles.Maxwell will be joined on the front row by Danny Burkett, who ran a lap of 2:23.648 (85.2 mph) in the No. 33 CJ Wilson Racing ONE Capital Management/ Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport co-driven by Marc Miller. Maxwell and Johnson enter the event with a 20-point lead over the Porsche drivers, 260-240, with only two races remaining.“The track was slippery with the heat, so the key was getting a fast lap early in the session,” said Maxwell. “My first lap today was my quickest. I tried to do another fast lap, but I made a mistake and bailed on it. Sure, it would be great to win tomorrow, but our main task is to get a solid finish. If we can get on the podium, it will be a bonus.”Tyler Cooke captured his second TOTAL Pole Award of the season in an abbreviated Street Tuner (ST) session, running a lap of 2:31.459 in the No. 84 BimmerWorld Racing OPTIMA Batteries BMW 328i. Cooke won the pole at Sebring, while co-driver James Clay won poles at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.“It was a high pressure situation – which is something I love,” said Cooke, who now has three career poles. “We made a few humungous changes following our final practice, and they really worked for qualifying. We were very tight in practice, and that allowed us to rotate in the corners. Our biggest concern is keeping the turbos cool as the race develops – we expect to see a lot strong cars here tomorrow.”Cooke knocked Sarah Cattaneo to the outside of the front row, after the driver of the No. 44 CRG-I Do Borrow Nissan Altima ran a lap of 2:32.153 (80.4 mph). The session was red-flagged for a stopped car before any of the competitors had a full lap; the 15-minute session resumed in time for drivers to run one lap on the clock.Cameron Fastest, Corvette DPs Take Top Four Positions In WeatherTech Championship PracticeLooking to score a third consecutive victory in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship competition, Dane Cameron turned a lap of 1:58.139 (103.6 mph) in the No. 31 Action Express Racing Whelen Engineering Corvette Daytona Prototype to lead Thursday’s opening practice for Saturday’s Lone Star Le Mans.Cameron and co-driver Eric Curran enter the event trailing teammates Christian Fittipaldi and Joao Barbosa by one point in the Prototype (P) standings, 253-252. Barbosa led the first of two sessions on Thursday, running 1:58.813 (103.0 mph) during the morning session, fourth best for the day. Only two races remain in 2016 competition, with the season concluding with the Petit Le Mans presented by Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort at Road Atlanta on Saturday, Oct. 1.Jordan Taylor was second in Prototype practice in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Corvette DP co-driven by his brother Ricky, running 1:58.755 (103.0 mph), followed by Ryan Dalziel in the No. 90 Visit Florida Racing Corvette DP, 1:58.785 (103.0 mph).In the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class, three-time 2016 winner Richard Westbrook was fastest with a lap of 2:04.107 in the No. 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT. The team enters the event second in the standings, trailing the No. 4 Corvette Racing Corvette C7.R of Oliver Gavin and Tommy Miler by seven points, 287-280.Giancarlo Fisichella was second fastest in GTLM with a lap of 2:04.510 (98.3 mph) in the No. 62 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTE co-driven by Toni Vilander.The No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports ORECA FLM09 of Robert Alon and Tom Kimber-Smith led the Prototype Challenge (PC) class with a lap of 2:01.131 (101.0 mph), set in the morning session. Second and leading the afternoon hour was Richard Bradley, with a lap of 2:01.367 in the No. 88 Starworks Motorsport Popcorn Sutton ORECA FLM09 co-driven by Mark Kvamme.Jens Klingmann led GT Daytona (GTD) with a lap of 2:08.075 (95.5 mph) in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT GT3 co-driven by Bret Curtis. Defending COTA winner Jeroen Bleekemolen was second, running 2:08.116 (95.5 mph), with both speeds recorded in the morning session. Markus Palttala was third and led the afternoon practice with a lap of 2:11.141 in the No. 97 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 co-driven by Michael Marsal.NOTEBOOKIn late changes to GTD driver lineups, David Calvert-Jones and Ben Barker were announced as drivers of the No. 007 TRG-AMR Aston Martin Vantage, and Paolo Ruberti joins Cedric Sbirrazzuoli co-driving the No. 27 Dream Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3.Thursday’s practice was run in sunny to partly cloudy temperatures, with a high of 93 degrees. The only WeatherTech Championship class to unofficially better the existing track record was GTD, with Klingmann’s best lap topping the existing mark of 2:08.502 (95.251 mph), set by Aston Martin’s James Davison in 2014.Sarah Cattaneo will be making her first front-row start in five years in Friday’s Continental Tire Challenge race. It was her best qualifying effort since winning her second career pole at Mid-Ohio in 2011. However, she and co-driver Owen Trinkler have two victories this season, winning at Sebring in a Honda Civic Si and at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in a Nissan.Joe Foster was a late entry in the Continental Tire Challenge field, making his first IMSA appearance since the 2014 Petit Le Mans. It will be the first race in the series since 2012 for Foster, who shared the 2008 GS championship with Scott Maxwell for Multimatic Motorsports.Friday’s schedule includes Round 9 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Championship at 1:40 p.m. ET, followed by WeatherTech Championship qualifying at 4:45 p.m. ET.