Mazda dominates at Watkins Glen for first breakthrough IMSA victory

Mazda Team Joest has won its first Daytona Prototype international race in the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship, with a dominating run that saw the Soul Red Crystal Mazda RT24-Ps finish first and second at the Sahlen’s Six Hours Of The Glen.

The number 77 Mazda RT24-P started the race at Watkins Glen International from pole position after British star Oliver Jarvis set a new course record for the DPi class in Saturday’s qualifying session. Jarvis led from the start, and both the 77 Mazda RT24-P driven by Jarvis, Timo Bernhard and Tristan Nunez, as well as the number 55 Mazda RT24-P driven by Harry Tincknell, Jonathan Bomarito and Olivier Pla led throughout the first five hours of the race.

However, a safety car period in the final hour negated their advantage and put the Mazdas in second and third position behind the Accura of Team Penske. Tincknell, driving the 55 Mazda RT24-P for the final two stints of the race, executed a pass for the lead in turn eight and immediately built a several-second gap. At the final round of pit stops, Mazda Team Joest was able to maintain Tincknell’s advantage and complete Jarvis’ service in time to jump him ahead of the Penske into second place.

When the checkered flag waved at the end of six hours of racing, Tincknell led Jarvis across the line by 0.353-second. Olivier Pla also recorded the fastest lap of the race, with a time of 1.29.657. The two Mazda RT24-Ps combined to lead 183 of 211 laps of this famous North American race track.

Added: 01 July 2019

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