Race Weekend Central

Eric Foss, Bill Auberlen Quickest in Laguna Seca Pilot Challenge Practices

At WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca Friday (Sept. 10), Murillo Racing’s Eric Foss was fastest overall in IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge practice.  Foss’ lap at 88.112 mph in the midday session held up as the fastest lap of the day.

Practice No. 1

Foss’ quick lap of the day came just 11 minutes into the 60-minute session on his third lap at speed.  The lap was four-hundredths of a second faster than Archangel Motorsports’ Trent Hindman.  Turner Motorsport’s Robby Foley was third in his BMW, then HTP Winward Motorsport’s Alec Udell and Bill Auberlen in the second BMW.

Wright Motorsports’ Jan Heylen was sixth quickest in the sole Porsche, followed by Riley Motorsports’ Scott Andrews in the quickest of the Toyota GR Supra GT4s.  Andrew Wojteczko Autosport’s Kuno Wittmer was eighth in his McLaren, then Motorsports In Action’s Spencer Pigot.  McCann Racing’s Andrew Davis rounded out the top 10.  The top 13 teams were within nine-tenths of a second of Foss’ quick time.

In TCR, the Audi RS3 LMS of JDC-Miller MotorSports’ Mikey Taylor was quickest with a lap at 86.269 mph, good for 20th overall.  Taylor’s lap was nearly four-tenths of a second faster than VGMC Racing’s Karl Wittmer.  Roadshagger Racing’s Jon Morley was third, while the Alfa Romeo of Tim Lewis Jr. was fourth.  Copeland Motorsports’ Tyler Gonzalez was the quickest of the Hyundais in fifth.

The session was red-flagged just after the halfway point after a couple of teams suffered tire punctures.  Vin Barletta ended up stopping on course after he suffered one.  Once Barletta’s No. 96 BMW was towed away, track crews took time to give a track a thorough sweeping before the session resumed.


Practice No. 2

In the second session, Auberlen was quickest with a lap at 88.090 mph, just two-hundredths of a second slower than Foss’ quick lap from the first session.  Auberlen’s lap was one-sixth of a second faster than Heylen.  Foley was third fastest once again despite the puncture that Barletta picked up in the first session, which did not appear to cause any issues with the M4.  Murillo Racing’s Jeff Mosing was fourth fastest, then Andrews.

PF Racing’s Chad McCumbee was sixth in the sole Ford Mustang GT4 in the field.  CarBahn Motorsports with Peregrine Racing’s Tom Dyer was seventh, followed by Archangel Motorsports’ Alan Brynjolfsson and the BMW of Stephen Cameron Racing’s Greg Liefooghe.  HTP Winward Motorsport’s Indy Dontje was 10th.

In TCR, Atlanta Speedwerks’ Robert Noaker was quickest with a lap at 86.529 mph, good for 18th overall.  Noaker’s lap was three-tenths of a second faster than Tim Lewis Jr.  Bryan Herta Autosport’s Ryan Norman was third in his Hyundai Elantra N TCR, then JDC-Miller MotorSports’ Chris Miller and points leader Michael Lewis.

The second session had a brief red flag when series debutant Anderson Tanoto stalled his Automatic Racing Aston Martin on course 27 minutes into the session.  Tanoto was towed into the pits, then resumed later on.

Only one car failed to turn in a lap during the second session.  That was the No. 94 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type-R TCR of Ryan Eversley and Scott Smithson.


Qualifying for the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca 120 is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. ET.  We’ll have a recap here at Frontstretch for your pleasure.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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