WATKINS GLEN, NY - The Blancpain GT World Challenge America driver duo of Toni Vilander and Daniel Serra posted the fastest times in the series' first practice session at Watkins Glen International. Presented by CrowdStrike, an international lineup of top drivers from over 10 countries will compete August 30 to September 1 at the scenic 11 turn, 3.4-mile road course located in upstate New York.
Early on in Friday afternoon's 60-minute practice, Pro Division driver Serra in the #61 R. Ferri Motorsport Ferrari 488 GT3 topped the charts with a 1:43.425 followed by K-PAX Racing's Rodrigo Baptista in the #3 Bentley Continental GT3 (1:44.827).
Fifteen minutes into the session, Marco Holzer in the #24 Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R slotted into second with a 1:44.710. Vilander then assumed the seat from Serra and posted a quicker top time with a 1:43.385.
In the Pro/am division, driver Dane Cameron in the RealTime Racing #43 Acura NSX posted the top time in the class and fifth quickest time overall with a 1:44.729. In the Am class Turner Motorsport driver Naoto Takeda in the #96 BMW F13 M6 GT3 posted a 1:46.405, quickest time in the class.
Pro driver Daniel Morad in the #22 Alegra Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R then registered the second quickest time of the session with a 1:44.585, only to be eclipsed by Cameron shortly after with a 1:44.569.
The session was then red flagged when Christopher Cagnazzi behind the wheel of the #19 One11 Competition Ferrari 488 GT3 went off into the tire wall in turn 9. Cagnazzi was not injured. The session resumed with just under 23 remains after tire wall repairs were completed.
The top three times held for the balance of the session with Vilander/Serra at the top of the sheets, Cameron (driver teammate Mike Hedlund), Morad (driver teammate Billy Johnson) in second and third respectively. Cameron's time was the quickest in the Pro/Am class while Takeda's time held for the quickest in the Am class.
Blancpain GT World Challenge America teams and drivers now get set for the second practice of the day scheduled for 5:30 pm EST. Follow live time and scoring at www.gt-world-challenge-america.com/watch-live#live-timing.