Tom Blomqvist and Connor DePhillippi in the #25 BMW Team RLL M8 GTE finished fourth in the GTLM class in the two-hour-forty-minute IMSA WeatherTech Series race at Mid-Ohio on May 5. Their teammates John Edwards and Jesse Krohn finished sixth in car #24.
Krohn was running third and DePhillippi was running fifth for the first 30 minutes of the race. DePhillippi pitted first, handing off to Blomqvist. Five laps later Krohn pitted to hand off to Edwards. Edwards slid off course on his out lap and fell back in the pack, while Blomqvist found his way back to third.
Both cars pitted again without making a driver change. Blomqvist battled for the last podium spot with the #911 Porsche, falling back to fourth late in the race, while Edwards ran as high as fifth, but finished sixth. The GTLM win went to Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor in the #912 Porsche; it was Porsche’s third consecutive win in the class.
DePhillippi said, “P4 today here in Mid-Ohio. Certainly we are moving forward. We knew we had a better race pace than we did yesterday in qualifying. We ran a mistake free race and did the best we could with what we had today. You have to keep learning and keep pushing ahead in these next few events. We are just missing a little bit next to the competition. I know we have the right guys in the workshop to take care of it. We’ll look through the data post-race and try to be better at the next one.”
The #96 Turner Motorsport M6 GT3, driven in the GTD class by Robby Foley and Bill Auberlen, was taken out on the first lap of the race when it was hit by another car. The class win went to Jack Hawksworth and Richard Heistand in a Lexus RC F GT3.
On the day before the WeatherTech Series race, James Clay and Devin Jones in ninth place were the best BMW finishers in the two-hour Michelin Pilot Series race. The team bet on rain tires when Clay came in from second place for a driver change. But the rain did not come, and the car fell back. The overall and Grand Sport wins went to Trent Hindman and Alan Brynjolfsson in a Porsche Cayman 718 GT4.
Competition in the GTD class resumes on Belle Isle in Detroit May 31–June 1. All WeatherTech Series classes and the Michelin Pilot Series run again at Watkins Glen on June 27–30.—Brian Morgan
[Photo courtesy BMW AG.]