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Lime Rock Friday Notebook

John Dagys’ Friday notebook from Lime Rock Park on eve of Northeast Grand Prix…

Photo: John Dagys

***A rogue motorhome ventured onto the circuit counter-race during the red flag period in the second practice session. The motorhome was stopped by IMSA safety vehicles, with an arrest made for “reckless endangerment” according to a track spokesperson.

***Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal will visit Lime Rock Park tomorrow to wave the green flag for the Northeast Grand Prix. Blumenthal is serving his second term as a U.S. Senator after serving an unprecedented five terms as Connecticut’s Attorney General.

***The No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 lost considerable time in Friday’s opening practice session with a broken upright. Robby Foley told Sportscar365 that the team also replaced the axle prior to Practice 2.

***As was the case in previous Lime Rock events, the car is sporting a “Tacos” graphic on the side of the car, paying homage to the team’s favorite food.

***Another car to encounter issues on Friday was the No. 88 Team Hardpoint EBM Porsche 911 GT3 R, which underwent a gearbox change following second practice. Rob Ferriol qualified the car 12th on the grid in GTD.

***Click Here for the provisional grid for tomorrow’s two-hour and 40-minute race.

***With Alegra Motorsports having been a no-show for the event, Saturday’s round will mark the first IMSA GT Daytona class race without a Mercedes-AMG GT3 on the grid since the manufacturer’s series debut in 2017.

***Ironically, each of the last three IMSA events has seen a new Mercedes-AMG customer team make its IMSA debut between WeatherTech Championship and Michelin Pilot Challenge competition, the most recent being Gilbert Korthoff Motorsports at the WeatherTech240 at Watkins Glen.

***Gilbert Korthoff is set to return for the next round at Road America with Guy Cosmo and Shane Lewis at the wheel. The status of Alegra, however, is unclear.

***Corvette Racing held its own autograph session Friday afternoon in the paddock, in what’s believed to be the first of its kind since the onset of the pandemic. IMSA is planning the return of a series-wide autograph session in the next round at Road America.

***The future of IMSA Prototype Challenge will be known at the sanctioning body’s ‘State of the Sport’ address next month at Road America according to series president John Doonan. Paddock rumors have indicated the potential consolidation of the LMP3-only series into the WeatherTech Championship for next year.

“We still have some internal meetings to discuss about that,” Doonan told Sportscar365. “We have a lot of stakeholders that are committed to IPC. We obviously have people who have spoken by their actions in running an LMP3. I think long-term, we want to do what’s right for both camps. More to come on that at Road America.”

***The refresh in FIA GT3 regulations, set to debut next year, allows manufacturers to produce Evo kits with only the updated parts needing to conform to the new regulations, according to Acura NSX GT3 program manager Lee Niffenegger.

“If you have an existing homologation and you do an Evo, you only have to meet the regulation for the parts that you change,” Niffenegger told Sportscar365. “If you do a complete new car, you have to meet all of the regulations.”

***Acura has joined Audi in confirming an Evo update to its existing GT3 car for next year, with Lamborghini planning to roll out the Huracan GT3 Evo2 in 2023.

***Live coverage of the Northeast Grand Prix will be on Trackpass on NBC Sports Gold beginning Saturday at 3 p.m. ET, with tape-delayed coverage on NBCSN at 5:30 immediately following the NASCAR Xfinity Series race.

***Dave Burns and Calvin Fish will be calling the race in the NBC Sports booth with Parker Kligerman and Kevin Lee in pit lane. IMSA Radio coverage will, as always, be anchored by John Hindhaugh, Jeremy Shaw and Shea Adam.

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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