Championship showdown set for Petit Le Mans season finale in October
It was rough day for Acura in the return of IMSA sports car racing to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, as both ARX-06 prototypes of Meyer Shank Racing and Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Autosport were damaged and delayed in in an opening-lap crash caused by another competitor, setting up a multi-manufacturer showdown for the series championship at next month's Petit Le Mans season finale.
Acura ARX-06 Hybrid Prototype
A chaotic first turn incident moments after the start put both Acura teams on the back foot in today's 10th round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Contact between Phillip Eng and Sebastien Bourdais at the start resulted in a spin by Bourdais. With no way to go avoid the spun Bourdais machine, both Acuras also were caught up in the collision, continuing with damage until the first round of pit stops.
The #10 Wayne Taylor Racing with Andretti Autosport ARX-06 of Filipe Albuquerque and Ricky Taylor escaped the multi-car contact with relatively minor damage. But an ill-timed second caution flag, which came out just after the team's first scheduled pit stop, cost them valuable track position. They fought hard the rest of the day, regaining several positions in the process, to end the day fifth.
The #60 Meyer Shank Racing and starting driver Tom Blomqvist suffered the greater impact in the opening-lap incident, requiring new front bodywork and other repairs in a long first stop. As a result, MSR went off-strategy with its remaining pit stops. But with no late-race cautions flags, closing driver Colin Braun needed to reduce his pace, resulting in a sixth-place finish.
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship next moves on to the 2023 season ending 10-hour Petit Le Mans endurance contest, Oct. 12-14 at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta in Braselton, Ga.