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No. 25 RLL BMW
BMW Finds Speed on Final Day of IMSA Open Test at IMS

One day after Porsche led the first two sessions of the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) Open Test on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, it was time for its German rival BMW to show its speed.

Connor De Phillippi led a 1-2 performance by BMW M Team RLL – fielded by NTT INDYCAR SERIES race winners Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing – in the last two sessions of the two-day test on the 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. Former Star Mazda (now USF Pro 2000) driver De Phillippi’s best lap was 1 minute, 14.655 seconds in RLL’s No. 25 BMW M Hybrid V8 that competes in the Grand Touring Prototype (GTP) class of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

SEE: Results

De Phillippi, Jesse Krohn and NTT INDYCAR SERIES star Colton Herta shared the team’s No. 24 and No. 25 cars and found speed in both prototype machines. Krohn turned the second-quickest lap overall Saturday, 1:14.758, in the No. 24 car.

Both those laps were quicker than the top time recorded in two sessions Friday, a 1:15.244 by Tijmen van der Helm in the No. 5 JDC Miller Motorsports Porsche 963. The RLL BMW team made big improvements Saturday, as its quickest time Friday was 1:15.498 by De Phillippi, more than seven-tenths of a second slower than Saturday.

“It was good today,” De Phillippi said. “We worked on a lot of different areas of the car, made some good steps on the systems side, understanding a few of the areas I feel like we’ve been weak on. So, I feel like we have a better understanding of the direction we need to go.

“I don’t think we have it totally figured out, but at least we have a direction. Really proud of the team. It was a productive two days.”

Four-time INDYCAR SERIES champion Sebastien Bourdais was third quickest overall Saturday at 1:14.809 in the No. 01 Cadillac Racing Cadillac V-LMDh fielded by NTT INDYCAR SERIES championship winners Chip Ganassi Racing.

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship teams and drivers tested Friday and Saturday to prepare for the return of the series to IMS for the first time since 2014 at the Battle on the Bricks on Sept. 15-17.

In the Le Mans Prototype 2 (LMP3) class, Mikkel Jensen was quickest at 1:16.532 in the No. 11 TDS Racing ORECA prototype. Matthew Bell led the Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) class for the second straight day, stopping the clocks at 1:21.209 in the No. 13 AWA machine, an improvement over his best lap of 1:21.401 on Friday.

The sole GT Daytona Pro (GTD Pro) team that tested Friday, Vasser Sullivan Racing, didn’t turn any laps Saturday. Misha Goikhberg led the GT Daytona (GTD) class at 1:24.192 in the No. 78 Forte Racing Powered by USRT Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO2, the quickest lap over both days for the class.

All five classes will compete simultaneously during the Battle on the Bricks, with the nearly 10-second gap in lap times between the GTP and GTD cars ensuring plenty of action and drama as quicker prototypes navigate lapped traffic of the production-appearing GTD classes.

In testing for the Michelin Pilot Challenge series, which showcases the latest high-performance production sports cars, coupes, hatchbacks and sedans, Eric Filgueiras was quickest in the Grand Sport (GS) class with a lap of 1:30.680 in the No. 28 RS1 Porsche 718 GT4 RS CS. That time, set during the first session Saturday, was considerably quicker than the top GS lap Friday of 1:31.865 by Eric Foss in the No. 56 Mercedes-AMG GT GT4 of Murillo Racing.

The No. 33 Hyundai Elantra N fielded by Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian remained atop the Touring Car Racing (TCR) class, but this time Harry Gottsacker was the quickest driver. Gottsacker’s time of 1:32.388 during the second session topped the best Friday time in the class of 1:33.315 set by his teammate and co-driver, NTT INDYCAR SERIES and Indianapolis 500 veteran Robert Wickens.

For more information or to buy tickets for the Battle on the Bricks on Sept. 15-17, visit

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