A controlling drive by Kyle Kirkwood has given ANSA Motorsports victory in Sunday’s Michelin IMSA Encore at Sebring International Raceway.
Kirkwood, in his sports car racing debut, took the No. 13 Ligier JS P3 Nissan to a 2.278-second win over Bell’s No. 26 K2R Motorsports Ligier following a late restart.
The 2018 F3 Americas and USF2000 champion held a 12-second lead on Bell prior to a heavy crash by Kenton Koch in the No. 25 P1 Motorsports Ligier, which brought out the fourth and final full-course caution with 39 minutes to go in the four-hour enduro.
Kirkwood pulled away from the British driver on the restart to take the win for he and co-driver Roman De Angelis.
Bell’s co-driver Kay van Berlo stretched out into a commanding lead from pole but it was neutralized at the end of the opening hour due to a yellow for a spin by the No. 4 ANSA Ligier of Dean Baker.
Two drive-through penalties and an incident by third driver Jim McGuire put the car one lap down, although Bell benefited from a wave-by in the third hour and charged through the field.
Katherine Legge held on to finish third in the No. 40 Polestar Motor Racing Ligier, after Nico Rondet spun while battling for the final podium position with 5 minutes to go.
Rondet came home fourth in the No. 11 Simraceway Motorsports Ligier, with the No. 64 K2R Ligier completing the top-five overall and in LMP3.
KohR Mustang Wins GT4; Ruscitti Makes Late Pass for TCR Victory
Roush Performance / KohR Motordports’ Nate Stacy, Kyle Marcelli and Dean Martin picked up GT4 class honors in their No. 60 Ford Mustang GT4.
Marcelli finished 16.255 seconds ahead of the No. 22 GMG Racing Audi R8 LMS GT4 of late addition Andy Lally, who lost the class lead due to an unexpected stop in the final hour.
A late-race pass by Remo Ruscitti on Stephen Simpson, meanwhile, gave Mark Motors Racing top class honors in TCR.
Ruscitti got around the then class-leading No. 54 JDC-Miller Motorsports Audi TCR with two laps to go, with Simpson pitting his car at the end of the lap with a suspected issue.
Ruscitti shared class honors with Marco Cirone in the team’s TCR debut in IMSA competition.
RESULTS: Michelin IMSA SportsCar Encore