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Pruett Leads Monterey Opening Practice

DPs 1-2 with DeltaWing third, ESM fourth in Monterey first practice…

Photo: Darren Pierson

Photo: Darren Pierson

Scott Pruett led opening practice for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix, as he and Memo Rojas seek their third straight victory this season in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Ford EcoBoost Riley.

Pruett’s best time of 1:20.243 came on his eighth lap in the 60-minute session, one which despite a packed track of 55 cars at any point on the 2.238-mile road course saw only two red flag interruptions.

Joao Barbosa was second in the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP at 1:20.590, with Andy Meyrick third in the No. 0 DeltaWing Racing Cars DeltaWing DWC13 Coupe at 1:20.603, ahead of all the P2-spec cars.

Johannes van Overbeek was best of those in the No. 2 Extreme Speed Motorsports HPD ARX-03b, at 1:20.735. Richard Westbrook rounded out the top five in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP, 1:20.893.

Colin Braun got CORE autosport’s No. 54 Oreca FLM09 into P6 overall and lead in Prototype Challenge at 1:20.915. The No. 25 8Star Motorsports and No. 08 RSR Racing Orecas were second and third in class.

Dirk Mueller took the No. 56 BMW Team RLL BMW Z4 GTE into the GT Le Mans class lead near the end of the session at 1:24.066.

Tommy Milner was second in the No. 4 Corvette Racing Corvette C7.R (1:24.387) with Wolf Henzler third in the No. 17 Team Falken Tire Porsche 911 RSR (1:24.401).

Five different manufacturers made up the top five in GT Daytona, with Leh Keen leading the runners in the No. 22 Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT America at 1:27.641.

Riley Motorsports’ new No. 33 SRT Viper GT3-R clocked in second, courtesy of Jeroen Bleekemolen at 1:28.167.

Kyle Marcelli was third in the No. 64 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 (1:28.205) with Bryce Miller fourth in the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Audi R8 LMS (1:28.369) and Dane Cameron fifth in the No. 94 Turner Motorsport BMW Z4 GT3 (1:28.442).

Two red flags interrupted the session. The first came with 24 minutes remaining when Doug Bielefeld, co-driving with Ryan Eversley in BAR1 Motorsports’ lone PC class entry (No. 88), ran wide exiting Turn 6 and buried himself in the tire barriers. He got out under his own power and the car, which suffered front end damage, was brought back to the pits on a flatbed.

With under three minutes remaining a second red flag flew when Spencer Pumpelly’s No. 45 Flying Lizard Motorsports Audi R8 LMS ran out of fuel at Turn 6 and stopped driver’s left. That brought a premature end to the session.

Second practice, with all cars, occurs from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m. PDT and will flow straight into qualifying, which will be split by each class and beginning at 4:55 p.m.

RESULTS: Practice 1

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno) is Sportscar365's North American Editor, focusing on coverage of the IMSA-sanctioned championships as well as Pirelli World Challenge. DiZinno also contributes to NBCSports.com and other motorsports outlets. Contact Tony

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